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McNally Smith and Schmitt Music Partner to Award Shell Lake Summer Camp Scholarships to Minnesota Teens

McNally Smith College of Music and Schmitt Music have partnered to award a pair of talented Minnesota teens — Maya Garcia (16) of Bloomington and Daniel Christian (17) of Hinckley — full-ride scholarships to Shell Lake Arts Center’s renowned music summer camps.

Meet The Scholarship Winners

Maya Garcia started on the recorder in first grade, switched to clarinet when she turned nine, and added tenor saxophone to the mix in eighth grade. Starting tenth grade at Bloomington Jefferson High School this fall, Garcia plays clarinet in the school’s wind ensemble and marching band, and she plays the saxophone in various school bands and ensembles as well as at MacPhail Center for Music.

Garcia is currently listening to a lot of jazz and classical music. Some of her idols include George Gershwin, John Coltrane, Ella Fitzgerald, Miles Davis, Tito Puente, Mongo Santamaría, Celia Cruz, Benny Goodman, Poncho Sanchez. Given her musical influences, it’s no surprise she’s choosing the Jazz Ensemble and Combo Camp at Shell Lake this summer. Someday, I would love to tour the world and to teach music to others,” Says Garcia. “I had so many positive, musical role models as a child — I would love to be that same role model for other kids in the future.”

Daniel Christian just finished his junior year at Hinckley-Finlayson High School, where he’s played in the school band — mainly the trumpet, but also percussion and trombone as well — since fifth grade. A true jack-of-all-trades, Christian also plays bass guitar in the school’s jazz ensemble, and he plans on attending the Guitar & Bass Workshop at Shell Lake.

Christian was about twelve years old when he realized music was his passion, and like so many before him, it was upon discovering The Beatles that he became inspired to pursue music to the fullest. “George Harrison is my guitar hero,” he says. Christian would one day like to tour the world, teach music and guitar to others, and become a producer. Lofty goals for sure, but he’s taking a big step toward realizing his dreams this summer. “I’m so excited to meet and collaborate with fellow musicians and other guitarists, and just learn everything I can about music for a week straight.”

Congratulations to both scholarship winners, and visit in the future for details regarding upcoming Shell Lake scholarship contests.

About Shell Lake Arts Center

Located 100 miles northeast of St. Paul, Shell Lake Arts Center has delivered nationally respected creative arts programming for both youth and adult learners for over 45 years. Featuring over a dozen music summer camps — ranging from Jazz Improvisation to Music Theater to Rock Band Camp — Shell Lake Arts Center provides campers an idyllic setting and access to master instructors and likeminded peers to help nurture their unique talents.

About Schmitt Music

Established in 1896, retailer Schmitt Music specializes in pianos, keyboards, organs, band and orchestra instruments, guitars and amplifiers, printed sheet music, music lessons, and more. Schmitt Music’s mission is to become their customers’ preferred resource for everything they need as they pursue their musical dreams.