July 23, 2021
We are pleased to introduce our inaugural cohort of students who have been selected for the much-anticipated Mirabella at ASU Musicians‐in‐Residence program in partnership with the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.
We are honored to welcome four exceptional graduate students from the ASU School of Music, Dance and Theatre who will be living and learning alongside the Founding Members of our community in exchange for musical performances and programming. This highly immersive, intergenerational program will strengthen Mirabella at ASU’s ties to the world‐class arts and cultural experiences offered at ASU. This is a symbiotic relationship—these student musicians will gain valuable experience designing musical programming for diverse audiences. Additionally, they will develop confidence and gain a strong network of music aficionados and supporters, which will benefit their emerging professional careers.
Each musician will share one program and one performance each week with the Mirabella community.
Ty Chiko is a doctoral student in music performance and a vocalist with a specialty in opera, jazz, and musical theatre. Ty was recently selected as a finalist in the prestigious 2021 Lotte Lenya competition that included a record‐breaking 500 applicants from 29 countries and 39 US states. Born in the Bahamas, Ty is deeply embedded in his community as an artist, social entrepreneur, and disability advocate. In August 2020, Ty launched his own bread company, Broken Breadhaus.
“Music and Art are the glue that brings society together. These forms of expression don’t see age, race, gender or nationality. Instead, they allow us to always question our personal beliefs and open our minds to the possibility of things that we might have never dreamt possible. I believe that the community at Mirabella can be a place where lifelong learners can continue to dream and create incredible art while collaborating with the ASU School of Music, Dance and Theatre community.”
Ty has already moved into his Mirabella apartment. Let’s make him feel welcome!
Abigail Sherrill is a master’s student in music therapy and a vocalist specializing in musical theater, popular music, and choir. She has a master’s degree in musical theater from Oklahoma City University and recently completed an in‐person music therapy internship at the Northern Arizona VA Hospital where she honed her ability to improvise, offer creative solutions for veterans, and learn a variety of music based on veteran preference.
During the winter season, Abigail enjoys working as a professional Christmas caroler and many say her voice resembles Julie Andrews! She is bringing her little dog Riley with her to Mirabella, and they are looking forward to meeting their new neighbor dogs!
Abigail is planning to move into her Mirabella apartment on August 1.
Michelle Kim is a doctoral student in music performance and a collaborative pianist. She has a master of music degree from Arizona State University and a master of music performance degree from the University of Toronto. As a collaborative pianist, Michelle specializes in creating and supporting ensembles. She will draw upon her connection to peers and faculty from across the ASU School of Music, Dance and Theater to present her extraordinary and versatile repertoire of classical and world music to the Mirabella at ASU community.
“The power of music comes from the fact that it truly works as a universal language, a language that has the power to touch even those with physical disabilities as a spiritual and communicative tool in the truest sense. My belief is that music performance should not be limited to concert halls. I believe it is every musician’s responsibility and purpose to find ways to make music accessible outside concert halls.”
Michelle is planning to move into her Mirabella apartment on August 1.
Alfredo Bonilla is a doctoral student in music performance with a specialty in bassoon performance. He has a master’s degree in bassoon performance from Indiana University and currently serves as an ASU teaching assistant. His classical training in bassoon began in Veracruz, Mexico, where he was born and raised. In 2014 he moved to the United States to pursue his education in music and Spanish. Alfredo’s resume shows a full background of working in and managing performing arts centers, recital halls, and church congregations as a choir scholar, which is where he discovered his love for intergenerational community.
“Ever since I was a child, relationship building has been very important, and it brings me great joy, satisfaction, and a higher purpose of life. Whether through formal associations like school, choirs, large and small ensembles, or extracurricular activities such as dancing, to more informal settings like waiting in line at a coffee shop, connecting with people has always been important for me. I am looking forward to the intergenerational experiences and connections I’ll have at Mirabella at ASU.”
Alfredo is planning to move into his Mirabella apartment on August 4.
Even before all the musicians have moved in, we’ve already seen impromptu jam sessions happening in the community. Check out Ty Chiko stopping in to sing with the ukulele group in our lobby. We strongly believe this program represents pioneering innovation in both musical performance education and university-based retirement living. We are grateful for your support and partnership as we launch this program and realize our vision for intergenerational living and lifelong learning.
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