Second Wind Dream piano instructor honored with gift at Elmcroft Senior Living

Photo by Emily Thiel Charlie Kalfadelis, Reading, shows off a banjo he plays that he handcrafted during his high school years. Kalfadelis has been playing the fiddle since he was 9-years-old.
Photo by Emily Thiel Fran Burkhart (left) presents Julie Seiz (right) with a Second Wind Dreams award for her service teaching piano to seniors who never had the chance to learn.

One teacher is being awarded for bridging together residents of Elmcroft Senior Living and musical ability.

Elmcroft residents who participate with Second Wind Dreams get to accomplish a goal off their bucket list through the program. Recently, Second Wind Dreams recognized piano instructor Julie Seiz for her efforts with senior citizens who craved lessons in learning the tickling of the ivories. In her time with Elmcroft, Seiz has provided weekly lessons for three interested seniors one hour per week. In addition to teaching seniors to play the piano, Seiz has started up a bell choir at Elmcroft.

On Wednesday, July 30, she was honored with an award, flowers and a $200 check from the organization. Charles Kalfadelis, 87, has been playing the fiddle since he was just 9-years-old.

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We never had a piano, he said of what stopped him from learning the instrument back then. Kalfadelis, a former chemical engineer with Eastern State Standard Oil, always had a strong passion for music. He handcrafted over 30 instruments throughout his life as a pass time and hobby. Kalfadelis continues to attend symphony concerts in Reading on a regular basis. Joyce Yerger has been taking lessons from Seiz for about a year and will be featured in a showcase to debut her recently acquired skills in September.

Yerger says she was not always interested in playing the piano, it was not until her time at Elmcroft that she decided to once again challenge herself musically.

I enjoyed the music and [thought] I would like to try that myself, she said. Yerger played the clarinet in the high school band at her years at Wilson High School. She even continued with the field and majored in the oboe during college.

It is through Seizs expertise that these Elmcroft residents have their Second Wind Dreams come true. Seiz has been playing the piano since she was 3-years-old and continues to teach lessons out of her home.

Thank you, Seiz said after being presented with graduate for her service. I learn a lot from my students, too.

Fran Burkhart, of Elmcroft Senior Living, presented Seiz with the awards, flower and check.

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About the Author

Emily Thiel

Emily Thiel is the editor of The Southern Berks News and is the Community Engagement Editor for Berks-Mont Newspapers. Emily joined Berks-Mont in March 2013. She graduated from Kutztown University in 2011 with a degree in English with a concentration in Cultural and Media Studies. Emily is a native of Allentown, Pa. Reach the author at ethiel@berksmontnews.com or follow Emily on Twitter: @sthrnberksnews.