This letter is intended to show the appreciation for Gloversville High School vocal professor Maggie Were Savage, and hopefully to give the Gloversville Enlarged School District's Board of Education a reason to more closely evaluate the reasons behind the suggestion to remove her from the high school's education staff.
Savage has 20 years worth of music students who graduated with the knowledge and skills necessary to pursue a career in the music industry. I have performed off-Broadway, been the music supervisor for Sears' product launches and gallery openings for The Fashion Institute of Technology, performed in various performance spaces as a musical theater performer and singer/songwriter throughout Boston and New York City. I personally know of many others living in metropolitan areas around the U.S. who have achieved even more success post-Maggie Were Savage.
I have freely given my time on multiple occasions to teach master classes to her students at the high school. Anyone with knowledge of the art world knows that colleges pay for experienced professionals to come and give inspiration and useful critiques to the school's students. Savage has such a great relationship with her students from the past 20 years that those working in music are happy to give their time to her students as a way of showing their appreciation for Savage.
I am happy to work with the board and with Savage to continue bringing more professionals in for master classes, but I am afraid the knowledge is only useful to students who have considered careers in music. That begins in high school, as their professor prepares them for auditions to get into college. Maggie has been there. She has been through the process herself of singing for professors at The College of St. Rose. To my knowledge, there is no other professor in the district who has this experience.
In conclusion, Maggie is the link between Gloversville students and the professionals in the music industry she taught during her years instructing students. Gloversville risks falling behind in the production of great musical talents without her the high school.