It starts small and as a parent you think the cost of music and dance lessons isn't that bad.
But that 7 year old ballerina who attends dance school for 30 minutes on a Saturday and who wears the neighbor's hand-me-down leotards starts to demonstrate some natural ability. And then you're in trouble.
Across America, parents of young musicians, singers and dancers patch together funds needed to nurture gifts in their children. We don't hear much about these kids because their athletic classmates get the glory.
Syracuse knows well the sports legends Greg Paulus, Mike Hart and Jason Grilli. But what about Nick Ziobro? Did you know he won the Great American Songbook Competition? Do you even know what the Great American Songbook Competition is? See what I mean?
My friend, the news anchor Carrie Lazarus, herself the mom of two grown daughters, knows the conundrum well. She hears the buzz around our student athletes, while the artists shine quietly beneath the collective community radar.
Carrie is pouring her own considerable talent into mobilizing the Syracuse area to help fund the dreams of young performing artists. In profiling these outstanding students she learned that a lot of gifted kids only get as far as their parents can afford to take them.
"Every child who is passionate about music should have the opportunity to reach their full potential, and their family's inability to pay for lessons, a new instrument or new opportunities should not hold them back", Carrie says.
If you're fortunate enough to be in the Syracuse area in a few weeks, you'll see what I'm talking about. Some of most talented high school students in the region will perform in an afternoon event called Carrie Lazarus Presents Extraordinary.... LIVE at the Landmark Theatre in downtown Syracuse at 3 pm. Tickets cost $13.50 and can be purchased in advance here, or at the ticket window on the day of the performance.
If you've ever attended a Syracuse University football or basketball game at the Carrier Dome, why not throw some support to the other gifted kids?
Treat yourself to an afternoon of wow at the Landmark and then donate any amount large or small to Carrie's Fund. Carrie has been my closest friend for 31 years and this is as excited about a project as I've ever seen her. She's onto something.
Enjoy Carrie's report below and then please make a donation here.