Chelmsford Public Schools Stringfest

Chelmsford Public Schools Hosts First Annual ‘Stringfest’

Virtual event features Berklee’s Mimi Rabson, BSO’s Kathryn Sievers

LISTEN: Mimi Rabson on All Things Considered, discussing composing, performing, collaborating and teaching in the pandemic

CHELMSFORD, MA (Mar. 22, 2021) – The Chelmsford Public Schools Music Department is hosting its first virtual Stringfest, which connects its orchestra students in grades 5-12 with world class musicians for instruction and performance.

Stringfest is scheduled for two days – Tuesday, Mar. 23 and Monday, Mar. 29 at 3:30 p.m. – and features Mimi Rabson, a professor of strings at Berklee College of Music and renowned violinist, violist and composer; and Kathryn Sievers, a violinist/violist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

“Both Mimi and Kathryn have such great talent and unique perspectives to offer my students,” said Lisa Tiano, Parker Middle School Orchestra Director. “It will be interesting to hear them talk about being a musician in the age of Covid, and how they have had to adjust. I hope my students find this to be a motivational experience that keeps them playing their instruments for the rest of their lives.

“I think I’m as excited as the kids for this,” Ms. Tiano added. “We’ve brought Mimi in before, and I wanted to expand on that. So I reached out to the BSO, and luckily they were receptive.”

On Mar. 23, Ms. Rabson will also perform and teach a master class for orchestra students in grades 5-7. A graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music, Ms. Rabson has a long, impressive resume which includes recording and performing with Itzhak Perlman’s Klezmer Project and performing on Late Night with David Letterman. She specializes in teaching improvisational skills in several forms of contemporary music, as well as technology and recording techniques for strings.

“Mimi has a wonderful program at Berklee where she teaches the students how to create music simply by listening to their favorite songs,” Ms. Tiano said. “The kids are so into it, and they’re able to reproduce it from their own instruments.”

On Mar. 29, Ms. Sievers will perform and present a master class for Chelmsford’s grade 8-12 orchestra students. Ms. Sievers joined the BSO in 2018 after performing for symphonies nationwide on a freelance basis. She earned her undergraduate degree in English literature from Yale and achieved her master’s degree in music at The Julliard School.

“Kathryn is a very talented young woman,” said Ms. Tiano. “I was hoping for a violist with a young person’s perspective on playing string instruments, and that’s what we’re getting.”

About Chelmsford Public Schools

The Chelmsford Public School District provides all students with multiple pathways to optimize their own potential for academic excellence, leadership, and social and emotional wellness. The mission of the Chelmsford Public Schools is to educate, engage, prepare, and empower well-rounded and knowledgeable learners to PERSEVERE through challenges, demonstrate RESPECT and INTEGRITY in their words and actions, are DEDICATED to their community, and display EMPATHY as global citizens while discovering and pursuing their full potential.  This PRIDE-driven culture enables all members of the school community to support the growth and development of students.  For more information, please visit