The Live Lehigh Music Appreciation House hosted its first-ever benefit concert called “That’s MAH Jam,” on Friday to raise money for two nonprofit organizations: Music is Medicine and the local Second Harvest Food Bank.
The concert featured performances from various musical groups on campus, such as folk band Steel City Sunrise, the Melismatics a cappella group and the Marching 97, as well as Music Appreciation House residents. A $5 minimum donation and/or a non-perishable food item was accepted as the entrance fee.
“Music is Medicine raises money to pair budding artists with pediatric patients,” said Sarah Dudney, ’17, one of the Gryphons of the Music Appreciation House. “The two get to know each other and then the artist writes a song for the patient.
“The Second Harvest Food Bank allows us to make a closer impact on the surrounding community, by turning one dollar into seven meals for families in need. (I’m) excited to raise money and collect food so that these organizations can continue to do the wonderful jobs they are doing.”
Michelle O’ Toole, ’16, a member of the Marching 97, said the band is often asked to participate in events like the Music Appreciation House concert.
“The Marching 97 is a symbol of pride and school spirit for the Lehigh community,” O’Toole said. “I believe that we were asked to participate in this event because people get excited when we come bursting in with a Lehigh fight song.”
Sarah Siegel, ’16, the community coordinator for this event and the Music Appreciation House, said that the Music Appreciation House must fulfill certain requirements to be considered a Live Lehigh community. These requirements promote social connections and enhance the learning environment of the house community.
Siegel focuses on what the house does as a community that is relevant to its theme.
“I use that focus to see what I need to do to make it all happen,” Siegel said.
The Music Appreciation House is an upperclassmen Live Lehigh residence hall, so the community is open to any non-first-year student.
“Students sign up during the spring semester of the year before and then, depending on the number of people that sign up, there is a housing selection process,” Siegel said.
The Music Appreciation House works closely with Residence Hall Association to attract students with similar interests.
“I was a member of the (Residence Hall Association) last year as a freshman,” Dudney said. “(The Residence Hall Association) has partnered with MAH for this event. They have helped to sponsor a lot of the expenses for the concert, and we are really grateful to them for that.”
For Jonathan Wood, ’17, his experience living in the Music Appreciation House with roommates that share his love for music has made him expand his horizons and bond with his housemates.
“I know for myself, I have discovered many new bands whom I can’t imagine a day going by without listening to one of their songs simply by hanging out with my housemates and being open to the unique music that they listen to,” he said.
Wood said his house is full of passion about music and about getting involved in the Lehigh community.
“(The Music Appreciation House) embodies the spirit of what a Live Lehigh community is all about,” Wood said. “Rather than being for a specific purpose like some of the other houses, we all share a love for something much more universal: music.”