December 2018
Jennifer Crusco
Communications Assistant

Concert Series Brings ‘JOY’ to Seniors in New Jersey & New York

Demarest, NJ: Joining Old and Young has opened its new performance series with a full day of visits to senior citizens’ residences in New Jersey and New York. JOY, which is based at the Academy of the Holy Angels in Demarest, New Jersey, performed at Sunrise of New City, Gallen Adult Daycare in Rockleigh, Russ Berrie Home for Jewish Living in Rockleigh, and Esplanade Senior Living at the Palisades.

At each residence, these musically-inclined teens presented one-hour concerts featuring songs from the ‘30s, ‘40s, ‘50s, and ‘60s.

“It's a wonderful experience that I wouldn't trade for the world,” said JOY member Kayla Pringle of Suffern, New York. Pringle shared that she and her peers were pleased to meet a woman named Florence.

“She described to us how she had lost her husband and son this year. However, this day was also her birthday, and she thanked us profusely with a smile, making many of us teary-eyed,” Pringle noted.

In addition to Pringle, performers at the latest concert series included Caroline Tolin of River Edge; Natalie Andreoli of Wyckoff; Meredith Joseph of Suffern, New York; Leah Sanchez, Sophia Luongo, and Julie Zierer of Upper Saddle River; Kaitlyn Guintu of Englewood; Yasmine Carter-McTavish of Lodi; Nina Valente of New Milford; Judianne Meredith of River Vale; Gabriella Borges and Josephine Noble of Demarest; Kaylin Valqui of Paterson; Victoria Sanabria of West New York; Juliana Dominguez of North Bergen; Arielle Maravilla of Leonia; Abrianna Gutierrez of Hamburg; Sara Folk of Old Tappan; and Uijin Kang of Closter.

JOY was established the early 2000s, when an AHA student noticed that her grandmother, who had Alzheimer’s disease, lit up when she played old music. That student decided to bring the same joy to others. New members have extended JOY’s good works with the ongoing support of pianist Suzanne Alenick.

JOY is also known for making donations to Make-a-Wish, an organization that fulfills the wishes of seriously ill children. At first, audiences who heard JOY concerts would make contributions to the students. The performers decided to give the money to a worthy cause. The group also raises funds through bake sales and Jeans Pass days, which allow contributing AHA students and faculty members to wear jeans to school for the day.

In 2016, JOY’s fundraising was so successful, that the group split the money in half and donated a piano to one of the senior residences the performers had visited.

Founded by the School Sisters of Notre Dame in 1879, the Academy of the Holy Angels is the oldest private girls’ school in Bergen County. While AHA is steeped in Catholic tradition, this prestigious high school serves young women from a broad spectrum of cultural and religious backgrounds. Over time, thousands of women have passed through AHA’s portals. Many go on to study at some of the nation’s best universities, earning high-ranking positions in medicine, government, law, education, public service, business, arts, and athletics. The Academy’s current leaders continue to further the SSND mission to provide each student with the tools she needs to reach the fullness of her potential—spiritually, intellectually, socially, and physically, by offering a first-rate education in a nurturing environment where equal importance is placed on academic excellence, character development, moral integrity, and service to others.


Academy of the Holy Angels

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Demarest, NJ 07627

Phone: 201.768.7822

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