If you’ve walked along Walnut and Chestnut Streets or inside the Suburban Street Station recently, you’ve more than likely seen them; talented teen violinists playing classical music.
“I heard the music and I turned around and I saw these young kids,” said Yvette Porter.
The teens make $40 to $60 a day. But the money isn’t for pocket change. Instead it’s being used to save their school’s music program.
“We’re basically out here to put money towards our instruments,” said Valencia Davis.
Davis, along with the other three musicians, Faith Williams, Caryle Cute and Blair Kidd are all Seniors at the Philadelphia High School for the Creative & Performing Arts. Due to cuts to the Philadelphia School District, money for new instruments and repairs is scarce.
“To get your bow re-haired is $60,” Williams said. “You have to get that re-haired every month or two. Bows are $200 to $500. They’re really expensive.”
Instead of beach trips and movies, the students have spent the majority of their summer playing music in the streets for several hours a day.
“Nobody is helping us pay,” Davis said. “We have to go ahead and do it ourselves.”
The students say they want to continue to pursue their dreams in music, even if it means financing it on their own.
“Even though we are young and we are teenagers, we can still do amazing things,” Kidd said. “We want people to see it.”