Creating an atmosphere of love and respect in a safe environment for his students is at the top of Terrence Thornhill’s personal mission as a teacher. He has been working with students in the Orange School District as part of a SOPAC music residency program funded by the Frank and Lydia Bergen Foundation.
Terrence Thornhill grew up in Maplewood and attended school in the SOMA (South Orange/Maplewood) district. In high school he turned his career aspirations towards playing the cello, and becoming a music teacher. Mentored by the high school teachers who helped him further his studies, he eventually attended Montclair State University and studied with Nicholas Tzavaras of the Shanghai Quartet.
As a teaching artist Terrence combines a flourishing performing schedule with teaching his young students. When asked about what inspired him he stated, “One of my favorite memories is performing for the first time at Union County Performing Arts Center with my Paterson Music Project Students for their first concert ever. These second- graders learned their violin, viola and cellos in two months and delivered an incredible and important performance. They premiered a piece commissioned for them and shared the stage with the New Jersey Youth Symphony. To see the looks on the faces of their parents, and to experience their joy in that performance, truly confirmed for me that I’m doing exactly what I’m supposed to be doing.”