RIVER VALE, N.J.– Louise Buzzelli of River Vale will always have hope.
She held hope that her husband, Pasquale, who worked inside the World Trade Center, would make it out alive after the Sept. 11 attacks. It was hours before she discovered he had.
She also has Hope, her eldest daughter, born shortly after.
Buzzelli owns and operates Mozart to Monet , offering joint art and music classes for children and adults. The inspiration came from her New York City upbringing: graduating from Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts and her frequent visits to the Museum of Modern Art.
After moving to New Jersey, Buzzelli, a Berklee College of Music alumna, was originally going to open a storefront in Ridgewood, but disagreements with the landlord squashed the deal.
"I was very upset. But then I started to ask myself, 'why not?'" Buzzelli told Daily Voice. "If having a place is going to hold me up, then why bother.
"I don't care how I get there, I'm going to get there."
Instead, she began renting space – classes are held at Mindy's Munchies in River Vale – or brought the classes to schools, libraries, the River Vale Community Center, River Vale Country Club, and other venues across the tri-state.
"This is something I've always dreamed about since I had kids," Buzzelli said. Hope teaches some of the classes and 10-year-old Mia is a regular participant.
A live musician – piano player or guitarist – provides the backdrop for the lesson on famous composers and artists. And each class is era-specific.
"This is Van Gogh's Starry Night. Pretend you're out on a balcony painting the starry night while you're listening to Claude Debussy," Buzzelli said of her Impressionists lesson.
"I'm not an art or music historian," she added, "but I love art and I love music and I love inspiring that in kids."
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