Sharing Volcanes Talent with the World

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Many of you who get our newsletters or keep up with us through social media know about the accomplishments and talents of our student Marco Reyes Cervantes. You know how proud we are of him and of being able to help him Dream Big.

Marco is an exceptional talent. Like many of our students, all he needed was someone to push him forward and believe in him on his way to the top. Like many of our students, he has the drive and dedication needed to be great at whatever he sets his mind on. We saw proof of his desire and hunger when, as a kid, we watched him learn to play the piano on a broken-down keyboard with missing keys. Or when we watched his almost obsessive way of listening to a song on the radio and not resting until he could play it on his piano perfectly. Marco is a perfectionist who demands the most of himself.

“I don’t want to live in the kind of world where we don’t look out for each other. Not just the people that are close to us, but anybody who needs a helping hand. I can’t change the way anybody else thinks, or what they choose to do, but I can do my bit.” – Charles de Lint

We knew Marco was special from the beginning. But we have been very surprised at how fast he has risen to prominence on the international stage of piano players. Remember, he is only in his second year of high school – attending one of the best music universities in all of Mexico. A few months ago, Marco entered a state contest for piano players in Tepic, Nayarit. Hundreds of the best piano players from Universities around Mexico competed against each other. One of his teachers suggested to Marco that he (teacher) thought Marco could win the contest and encouraged him to sign up. As expected, Marco did incredibly well in this contest. He took home 2nd place and was allowed to participate in the next contest which would be held in Monterrey. In Monterrey he again won 2nd place.

After the Monterrey contest, Marco was invited to represent Mexico at an international contest being held in Colombia. Many people came together to help raise funds for his trip to Colombia. An event was held at Casa Karma Boutique resort by its generous owner, Georgia Dareshori, who has played a big role in Marco’s music development. Gail Arnold and her husband Steve, along with Amy Finch and Ron Fahey have also played a huge role in Marco’s education. Everyone came together to help and Marco traveled to Colombia to share the Volcanes talent with the world. At this event, Marco won the judges over with his methodical and surgical playing, making difficult pieces look easy. He brought home two 1st place prizes – first place in the piano contest and first place for best individual performance. Many of us were watching Marco’s competition on Facebook live and were cheering every time he moved his fingers over the piano keys with precision and pizzazz.

Marco’s ascendance to prominence has shown us two things. First, it has shown us that there is much talent to be discovered here in colonia Volcanes. There are many students here who are just as talented or dedicated as Marco in their own fields of interest. They may not be winning international awards and prizes, but they work hard everyday to reach their goals and dreams. These are students who dream of being doctors, lawyers, architects, nurses, etc. They work hard, under difficult circumstances, because they dare to Dream Big.
The second thing we learned from Marco’s ascendance is the most important – when people come together to help one of these students, big things can happen. Marco has been the first one to tell us that without the support he has received, he would still be here in Volcanes watching his talent go to waste. All of us together have made Marco’s dream come true and have pushed him to be the piano player he is today, an international champion representing and sharing Volcanes talent with the world.

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