Goshen News, Goshen, IN

State News

March 17, 2014

Father-daughter cellist team finds musical dreams


Nick began to help Kyra learn the cello and, in the process, rediscovered his own love for the instrument.

"It creates an opportunity to spend quality time in something we both enjoy doing. It's rekindled my love for playing," Nick said.

The cello also has become a passion for Kyra, according to her mother, Karen.

"I never have to say, 'Hey Kyra, did you practice?'" Karen said. "This doesn't seem like work to her."

Her interest led Kyra to propose to her parents that she use her savings to purchase her own cello, so Nick and Kyra could practice together and play duets. After some searching, Nick found a "fine, intermediate-level cello" on Craigslist for Kyra.

The pair played for family get-togethers — Kyra insists they take the cellos on vacation so they can play with Cheryl, who plays with the Mason (Mich.) Symphony and once accompanied Mannheim Steamroller — before playing in public for the first time at Showcase.

Their soon-after second performance came about when LouAnne Pillers, history teacher at St. John and president of the Common Grace board of directors, found out Nick and Kyra were performing at Showcase and asked if they also would play for Noble County's Got Talent.

Nick said one of the benefits of performing with Kyra is that it helped him get over the stage fright that plagued him in his youth.

"One of the key life lessons I've learned from my teenage daughter is to just get over the stage fright and enjoy music," he said.

Kyra said she also enjoys performing with her dad.

"It was kind of scary for the first time, but once it was over it was like, 'Yeah that was awesome,'" she said.

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