Honoring Flutist, Composer, and Educator: Katherine Hoover

In honor of what would have been her eighty-first birthday this month, we would like to pay tribute to Margaret’s beloved flute teacher, Katherine Hoover.unnamed

Ms. Hoover was born on December 2nd, 1937 in West Virginia and grew up in the Philadelphia area. She studied flute with the great flute master William Kincaid in Philadelphia and received a bachelor’s degree in music theory and a performance certificate in flute from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester in 1959.

The dozens of works that Ms. Hoover wrote during her lifetime have been performed by over five dozen musical ensembles including the Santa Fe Symphony, the Colorado Quartet, the New Jersey Chamber Music Society, the Sylvan Wind Quintet and the New York Virtuoso Singers. In 1994 she conducted the Harrisburg Symphony in the premiere of her orchestral tone poem “Night Skies.” Prominent flutists including Carol Wincenc, Julius Baker, Eugenia Zukerman, and Mark Sparks have also performed her repertoire for flute, which includes Kokpelli for solo flute based upon Native American flute music and the Medieval Suite based on Barbara Tuchman’s book, “The Distant Mirror” by Barbara Tuchman. Margaret had the privilege and honor of performing “The Medieval Suite” in its entirety at her senior flute recital at Oberlin Conservatory in December 1995. Ms. Hoover, who also played professionally, won the National Flute Association’s lifetime achievement award in 2016. Among her many other achievements, Ms. Hoover started her own music publishing company, Papagena Press, in order to release her own compositions. 

Ms. Hoover was teaching flute and music theory at the Manhattan School of Music when Margaret first joined her flute choir in the MSM Preparatory Division during the 1970’s. During the two years that Margaret studied with her as a private student, Margaret made so much progress in her flute playing that she was accepted as a flute performance major at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in 1980. Margaret, who had begun composing at the age of seven,  was also incredibly inspired by Ms. Hoover as a composer and a person as well as a flutist. Ms. Hoover was like a second mother to Margaret who had the opportunity to live with her during Winter Term during her Freshman year at Oberlin. Margaret also had the opportunity to get to know her son, Norman Schwab as well as her husband Richard Goodwin. Ms. Hoover was definitely one of the biggest inspirations in Margaret’s life and will be sorely missed.

Bunty Bernstein’s Danceology

Bunty dancing

  • Hiawatha (Spirit of love, ensemble in the Spring Ballet), Royal Albert Hall, 1937
  • Charity Event for the waifs and strays ( (Spirit of a birthday cake), Royal Albert Hall, 1938 (attended by Queen Mary)
  • Birthday Party for Queen Mary (Spirit of a birthday cake), Grosvenor House, 1938
  • Beauty and the Beast Pantomime (Snowflake), Lyceum Theater, 1938
  • Imperial Society annual congress (German dancer), 1938
  • Queen of Hearts Pantomime (Cupid), Lyceum Theater, 1938 (costume made by Manya)
  • Cecchetti Society All Star charity event for the School for the Blind, (The Little Mermaid), (Choreography by Margaret Craske). (Also featured Anthony Tudor and Hugh Laing), London Palladium in Oxford Circus, 1938
    • La Concurrence (“The child”), ( ballet choreographed by George Balanchine with  the Ballet Russe of Monte Carlo, Covent Garden, 1939
    • The Sleeping Princess (AKA “Sleeping Beauty”), (Page to the Rose Fairy, Red Riding Hood), with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet), 1940
    • Coppelia (Coppelia the doll; soloist in the betrothal dance) With Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet), 1940
    • The Prospect Before Us (AKA “Pity the Poor Dancers), (A street urchin), with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet), 1940
    • Casse Noisette (AKA Nutcracker Ballet) (Mouse, Reed flute in Les Mirlitons) with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • The Wise Virgins (cherub) with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • Dante Sonata (Child of Darkness) With Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • Le Lac de Cygnes (AKA Swan Lake) (in quartet of the little swans in act 2 and a black cygnet in act 3; Solo in trio at ball) with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • Giselle (dancer in quartet in act 1 and will in act 2) with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • Facade ( an Ecossaise AKA “Scottish Dancer”; Soloist as the milkmaid) with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • Les Sylphides (a Sylph) with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • Comus (a pig) with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • Rake’s Progress (Dancer in tavern) with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • Les Patineurs (Soloist as Fouette’ Girl and Ice Skater) with Sadlers Wells (Royal Ballet)
    • Lisbon Story (dancer), Palace Theater, London (1943)
    • Jenny Jones (dancer), London (1944)
    • Gay Rosalinda (member of the ballet), Palace Theater, London (1945)
    • London Town (dancer in the film choreographed by Agnes De Mille (1945)
      • Oklahoma (the girl who falls down) in the Broadway show choreographed by Agnes De Mille), St. James Theater, NYC  (1946)
      • Brigadoon (fish monger in the Broadway show choreographed by Agnes De Mille), Ziegfeld Theater, NYC (1947)
      • Rape of Lucretia (Prostitute in the opera choreographed by Agnes De Mille), Ziegfeld Theater, NYC (1948)
      • Brigadoon (Jean McLaren in the show choreographed by Agnes DeMille), Manchester Opera House and His Majesty’s Theater, London, UK (1949)
      • Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Dancer in the Broadway show choreographed by Agnes De Mille), Ziegfeld Theater, NYC and at Palace Theater, Chicago (1951)
      • Neptune Music Circus (various roles in a collection of one week runs of shows including Brigadoon, Carousel, Bloomer Girl, Merry Widow, Desert Song and Annie Get Your Gun) Asbury Park, New Jersey (1952)
      • Ballet Theater (AKA American Ballet Theater), (Girl dancer), Rodeo (Ballet choreographed by Agnes De Mille), NYC (1952)
      • Aida, La Boheme, Cavalleria Rusticana, Salome and other operas (dancer and members of the chorus), Metropolitan Opera Company (1952)
      • Agnes De Mille’s Dance Theater on tour (1953-54), US and Canada
      • The Glenn Miller Story (Film featuring Gene Krupa and James Stewart), 1954
      • Oklahoma (The movie choreographed by Agnes De Mille), 1955
      • Guys and Dolls (The movie choreographed by Michael Kidd), 1955
      • Marty (The movie featuring Ernest Borgnine and Betsy Blair ),1955
      • Funny Girl (The movie featuring Audrey Hepburn and Fred Astaire), 1956
      • Carousel (The movie choreographed by Rod Alexander), 1956
      • The Vagabond King (The movie choreographed by Hanya Holmes), 1956
      • Anything Goes (The movie choreographed by Roland Petit), 1956
      • The Best Things in Life are Free (The movie choreographed by Rod Alexander and Bill Foster), 1956
      • Black Bottom (a dance from “The Best Things in Life are Free” with Tex Hightower for Meher Baba), San Francisco, 1956
      • Pajama Game (The movie choreographed by Bob Fosse), 1957
      • Gun Fight at the OK Corral (The movie featuring Burt Lancester), 1957
      • Silk Stockings (Movie featuring Cyd Charisse and Peter Lorre choreographed by Eugene Loring) 1957
      • Goldilocks ( Maid in duet with Kelly Brown in Broadway Show Choreographed by Agnes De Mille ), Lunt Fontanne Theater, NYC  (1958-59)
      • Les Patineurs (Dance with Marie Adair, Peter Saul, Naomi Westervelt, Zebra Nevins, Joe Fabian, and Jean Cebron for Meher Baba), The Barn, Meher Center, Myrtle Beach , 1958

Margaret Bernstein’s Mother, Bunty Kelley Bernstein, dies at age 92

Bunty dancing

Bunty dancing in Sleeping Beauty with the Royal Ballet in London during the 1930’s

Margaret Bernstein’s Mother, former dancer, Bunty Kelley Bernstein, passed away peacefully in her home in Delmar, New York on Thursday, August 17th, 2017 at the age of ninety two after a battle with cancer. At the request of Bunty, no funeral or memorial service will be held. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in her name to the SAFE through the arts bullying prevention program at Azalea Blossom, Incorporated, POB 21777, Brooklyn, NY, 11202 or at http://www.azaleablossom.com/support/donate

Bunty Kelley Bernstein (Nee’ Helen Margaret Douglas Kelley) was born on April 11, 1925 in London, England to Scottish parents- Nell Dunlop Kelley and John Douglas Kelley, an editor for Shell-Mex BP oil magazine. Bunty’s spent her childhood living in Chelsea, London and spending her holidays with her parents, her Great Aunt, Katerina Forbes Dunlop (the headmistress of the England’s oldest boarding school) and her brother Peter in the sea-side town of Winchelsea in East Sussex. She began formal ballet lessons at age eight and went on to study with Margaret Craske and her assistant Mabel Ryan a few years later. Bunty began her professional career at an early age beginning with small character roles in movies and left school to pursue a full time position as a pantomime dancer at the age of twelve.

Bunty performed in La Concurrence, a ballet choreographed by George Balanchine, in the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo before embarking upon a full time career with the Royal Ballet Company (then Sadlers Wells) in 1939. During the interim while the Sadlers Wells theater was closed during the Second World War, Bunty performed with the Rambert Ballet Company for noontime concerts. She continued to dance with Sadlers Wells when it reconvened in 1941 in order to perform for British troops in France and Belgium. Soon afterwards, Bunty performed in several musical shows including Lisbon Story, Jenny Jones and Gay Rosalinda in London before accepting a position with choreographer Agnes De Mille in the film ‘London Town”. In 1946, Bunty left London to join Ms. De Mille in America to perform in the production of Oklahoma on Broadway.

During her tenure with Agnes De Mille, Bunty performed various roles in numerous films and Broadway musicals. Some of the highlights included the following films: Oklahoma, , Carousel, Pajama Game, The Best Things in Life are Free, Anything Goes and Silk Stockings and the following musical shows: Oklahoma, Gentlemen Prefer Blonds, Goldilocks and Brigadoon (Broadway) and Brigadoon (London). In addition, she performed in California and in Myrtle Beach for the Indian Master Meher Baba of whom she was a devotee.

Bunty began her ballet teaching career while she was still performing beginning with private classes in Los Angeles and in New York City. She began teaching ballet classes at the Bronx House Music School and went on to teach at the Metropolitan Opera House where she taught until the early 1960’s. She began teaching in the Dance Department at Adelphi Univeristy under the Chairmanship of Harry Bernstein on Long Island in 1959 where she taught and eventually received status as Associate Professor until the early 1970’s. In 1960, she married Harry Bernstein and in 1962 they gave birth to a daughter, Margaret Jean, who eventually became a professional musician.

In the spring of 1974, she began teaching at BOCES Cultural Arts Center (now known as Long Island School of the Arts), where she stayed for twenty years. During her time there, she taught many promising dancers who went on to pursue professional careers in dance including Michael Trusnovec, soloist with the Paul Taylor Dance Company. Upon her retirement, Bunty volunteered with a number of organizations including the Garden City nursery school, Hempstead Public Schools and Azalea Blossom, Incorporated where she served on the Board of Directors for several years.

Bunty resided in Garden City on Long Island, New York from August, 1966 until October, 2012 where she moved to Delmar in Upstate, New York. In the last few years of her life, she was active in supporting the budding percussion career of her grandson, Julian Jacobs. She is survived by her daughter, Flutist/songwriter Margaret Jean Bernstein, her grandson, percussionist/drummer Julian Jacobs and nieces and nephews.

Meet the Bricks Band from Margaret Bernstein and the Bricks Band!

*Accepting booking for Spring/Summer of 2018! Go to Growing Azalea Music for more information.

Sue Taylor, Guitarist  Sue

Sue Taylor has performed all over the world, from the 52nd Inaugural Ball in Washington D.C. to Carnegie Hall in New York, Casino Estoril in Lisbon, Portugal, and The Bollon Line in Nagasaki, Japan. She has appeared with some of the biggest names in entertainment, including Chris Martin of Coldplay, Gwyneth Paltrow, Micheal Bolton, Linda Fecher (former in house composer for Douglas Divine Dance Troupe) and Gretchen Langheld. Sue’s television credit’s include “The Joan River’s Show”, “ Retaining Laughter” (on Lifetime) and a special appearance performing on The Sopranos. Sue is currently working on an album of her original jazz-fusion compilations.  Sue met Margaret at the same Tu B’Shevat performance in Saratoga Springs and has been preforming in Margaret’s band since September 2008. Sue hails from Ithaca, New York.

Iris Ornig, Bassist Iris

Iris Ornig, who was born and raised in Germany, has studied at the Jazz School at Saint Gallen, Switzerland, and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, England. She has performed as a bassist and band leader of her own quartet at a variety of venues throughout Europe, the United States, and West Africa including the Bitter End Café and Joe’s Pub in New York City, Birdland in Vienna, Austria, and Barbican Hall in London, England. Her festival appearances have included the Saint Petersburg Jazz Festival, Moscow Jazz Festival, and the Jazz Festival in Innsbruck, Austria, and Hartford Jazz Festival in Connecticut. She has appeared on several recordings and has been the Musical Director of the Greensburg Sommertheater in Switzerland. Her original compositions can be heard on her website, www.irisornig.com. Iris first met Margaret during Tu B’Shevat performance in Saratoga Springs and has been performing in Margaret’s band since March 2007. She currently resides in New York City.

Marla Bracco , Violinist

Marla Bracco had both an undergraduate and Master’s in violin performance from the

Peabody Conservatory of Music. In 2009, she completed her long-term Suzuki Certification through the School for Strings in New York City. In and around the Capital Region, Marla has performed with Albany, Schenectady, and Glens Falls Symphony, in which tours have taken her throughout the United States and Italy. Marla is currently on the faculty of the Woodland Hills Montessori School in North Greenbush, New York. She is one of the original members of Margaret’s band, having joined the ensemble in March 2007 and resides in Albany, New York.

Mareike Wiening, DrummerMaerike W.

Brooklyn-based drummer Mareike Wiening will record her second album as a bandleader and composer in 2017. She won several competitions and awards both in Jazz and Classical and appeared on many critically acclaimed recordings as a sidewoman with artist like Adrian Mears and Johannes Enders. Her music was already played at the Carnegie Hall NYC as well as in concert halls in Germany, Switzerland, US, Denmark, Estonia and Brazil. Wiening is a cultural laureate of her hometown Herzogenaurach as well as the county Erlangen- Höchstadt in Bavaria, Germany. She was honored to play at international acclaimed festivals like the ENJOY JAZZ Festival, Women in Jazz Festival and at important European venues such as “Unterfahrt” Munich, “A-Trane” Berlin as well as Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola NYC and the Blue Note in New York City. She represented the University of Performing Arts Mannheim at the IASJ Meeting in Sao Paulo, Brazil and has played in award winning bands like the German Youth Jazz Orchestra (BuJazzO) and the swiss “Generations” band. She received a scholarship to attend the international acclaimed jazz workshop at Banff, Canada. Mareike studied Jazz Performance at the University of Performing Arts, Mannheim, Germany and completed a yearlong exchange at Rythmic Musikkonservatory (Copenhagen, Denmark) in 2010. In 2012, she moved to New York City after receiving the DAAD scholarship from Germany for two years. Mareike was enrolled at the Master program at New York University where she has studied with Tony Moreno, Stefon Harris, Kenny Werner, Dave Pietro and many more. She received her degree Master of Music in spring 2014. Mareike Wiening endorses MEINL Cymbals exclusively.

Alexa Valentino on tour with Summer Jam 2017!

Alexa Valentino, songwriter, anti-bullying advocate, and Margaret’s co-songwriter, will be going on tour this summer with a bunch of fantastic artists on the Summer Jam 2017 Tour! Alexa and Margaret have been working together on a few songs, one of them being “Alive”, which is also the title of Alexa’s debut album. The song is being produced by Platinum Producer Barb Morrison who worked with Margaret on Distant Thunder and Songs from SAFE through the arts. Alexa has recently released her first single off of her debut album Alive called Driveway! Check it out here.

For more information on Summer Jam 2017 Tour, go to https://www.summernightstours.com/.

Other website you should check out!

Alexa Valentino Website: http://www.alexavalentino.com/

Barb Morrison Website: http://www.superbuddhamusic.com/

Azalea Blossom Website (for more information on Songs from SAFE through the arts): www.azaleablossom.com/SAFE

Azalea Blossom May 2017 Newsletter

Welcome to the May 2017 Newsletter!

Successful Completion of Spring Internships

Azalea Blossom’s interns from SUNY Albany and Hartwick College have successfully completed their spring internships. Natalia Lewitinn, the Assistant Director of Program and Development from Hartwick College, has been working on grant proposals during her internship with Azalea Blossom as well as managing several social media accounts. These skills will be helpful in her future endeavors as she aspires to work in nonprofit organizations. She is looking forward to starting her senior year as an accounting and business major at Hartwick College in the fall. Alyssa Budke, the Director of Marketing for Bricks in the Wall from SUNY Albany, built a fan base for the Bricks in the Wall project. She is looking forward to bringing the skills, which she acquired during her internship at Azalea Blossom to her internship with Victoria Secret’s Pink in the fall. Taj Marable, the Manager of Operations and Human Resources for Azalea Blossom from SUNY Albany, gained valuable first-hand experiences on how an organization is run and the day-to-day operations that are conducted. He is looking forward to pursuing future business in music and other industries in the near future. Azalea Blossom would like to thank these three lovely interns for all of their contributions to our organization and wish them all their best in their future endeavors. http://www.azaleablossom.com/about/team/

News from the SAFE through the Arts program

We are very excited our new student handbooks as well as the progress of our puppet characters, which are currently being manufactured by the Creative Arts Store in Alabama. We look forward to implementing the SAFE through the arts program into one hundred PreK and kindergarten classrooms in New York State public schools within the 2017-18 school year.


Bricks in the Wall Project Update

Bricks in the Wall’s Marketing Director Intern, Alyssa Budke, has made major accomplishments for the project, which was formed in 2007 by director and founder Margaret Bernstein. The Bricks in the Wall project using music and multi media to bring education and healing to victims of domestic violence as well as awareness to the general public. The Bricks in the Wall project can now be found on Twitter, Instagram, SoundCloud, Facebook, and YouTube. Alyssa’s latest project was working on the lyric and song book for the Bricks in the Wall album. Margaret and the Bricks band are currently booking gigs to perform in 2018. http://www.azaleablossom.com/bricks-wall/

Featured Donor of the Month- Bunty Bernstein
In honor of Mother’s Day this month, the featured donor of the month is Bunty Kelley Bernstein, Margaret’s mother. Bunty is a retired dancer and ballet instructor whose professional career includes years of dancing with the Sadlers Wells (the Royal Ballet) in London, England as well as assisting and performing in many of choreographer Agnes de Milles productions in the United States. Bunty also served on the Dance Faculty of Adelphi University in Garden City, New York and the Long Island High School for the Arts (BOCES Cultural Arts) in Syosset, New York. In addition to being one of Azalea Blossom’s most generous donors over the last several years, Bunty also served on the Board of Directors and as an interim secretary where she helped edit outgoing notices and newsletters in addition to researching prospective grants. We would like to thank Bunty for all of her support and many roles within our organization.

“Songs from SAFE through the Arts”

The CD of songs, “Songs from SAFE through the arts” consists of nine original empowering songs, which, along with the puppets skits, are now an integral part of the program. All proceeds from the sales of the album directly benefit the SAFE through the arts program. www.cdbaby.com/cd/azaleablossom


Support us through GoodSearch

Did you know that there’s a way to support Azalea Blossom and the SAFE through the arts program at no cost to yourself? Well, there is! GoodSearch, a search engine just like Google, donates money based on your searches through the site. It also donates based on purchases made through special promotions featured on the site. We encourage everyone to check it out!

Thank you for your support

Azalea Blossom Inc. graciously accepts tax-deductible donations of any amount for the SAFE through the arts program, the Bricks in the Wall project and our operating expenses. Secure contributions can be made through PayPal using your credit card (no PayPal account required). Alternatively, donations may be mailed to: Azalea Blossom, Incorporated PO Box 21777 Brooklyn, NY, 11202

Follow us on Social Media

Twitter: @azalea_blossom7, @BricksInTheWall, and @SAFEThroughArts

Instagram: @safethroughthearts, @bricksinthewallproject

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCVeIf6ik4brTWhU7FZrp_9w

SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/safethroughthearts

Facebook: SAFE through the Arts, Azalea Blossom

Please follow us on our social media accounts!

Quote of the Month

“Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there.” -Rumi

With love, best wishes and gratitude,
Margaret Jean Bernstein Founder and Program Director
SAFE through the arts program,
Azalea Blossom, Incorporated

“I Can Be” by Margaret Bernstein Featured on The CMN’s Blog!

“I Can Be”, a song off of Songs from SAFE through the arts album, was recently featured on the Children’s Music Network Blog – Tuneful Tuesdays!


Check it out!

“I Can Be” by Margaret Jean Bernstein on Tuneful Tuesday

Azalea Blossom March 2017 Newsletter

Happy Azaleation Day!

Falling on the same day as International Women’s Day, March 8th is Azaleation Day, the day on which at Azalea Blossom, Incorporated celebrate our unique selves. We invite you to also celebrate your beautiful uniqueness on this day and every day and fill your day with self-appreciation and love.

Generosity Campaign

Azalea Blossom has just launched a new campaign on Generosity to fundraise for the manufacturing of the sixteen puppet characters who are an integral part of the SAFE through the Arts program. These puppets teach lessons based upon the three key components while embracing diversity and we need your help to bring them to life! Donors of the SAFE through the Arts puppet project will receive a personalized thank you letter and other gifts such as t-shirts, song downloads, CDs, and an invitation to the donor party! Thank you for your part in bringing bullying prevention education into our schools. For more information about the campaign: https://www.generosity.com/education-fundraising/puppets-for-the-safe-through-the-arts-program

News from the SAFE through the Arts program

We are eagerly anticipating bringing the SAFE through the arts program back to PreK and kindergarten classrooms later this spring! Former Azalea Blossom intern Amy Gong has been hard at work on designing the student and teachers handbooks for the program.

Meet Azalea Blossom’s New Interns!

The first day for our new spring interns Natalia Lewitinn, Alyssa Budke, and Taj Marable was Friday, February 10th, 2017. We had a great experience all together in the office with Kristen and Margaret doing a few team-building activities. We discussed our roles as well as laid out some goals for the semester. These efforts will mainly be shown on social media so make sure to follow all of our Twitter and Instagram accounts. Please stay tuned and follow their journey! Read more about Natalia, Alyssa, and Taj and their accomplishments to Azalea Blossom, SAFE through the arts, and Bricks in the Wall http://www.azaleablossom.com/about/team/

Bricks in the Wall Project Update

Our Bricks in the Wall Project has been making great strides to send out our message through several social media platforms! We have now created a YouTube account for Azalea Blossom, where you can find our inspirational music video. We have also created a Facebook page for Azalea Blossom, where Bricks in the Wall posts regularly. On top of those two platforms, we also have two additional specific handles for the project. Find them on Instagram, @BricksintheWallProject, and Twitter @BricksintheWallProject. We are excited to celebrate International Women’s Day and Azaleation Day both on March 8th! We celebrate this day to recognize the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. Women are strong, amazing individuals who do not deserve the disrespect of domestic abuse. Bricks in the Wall is looking forward to sending out their message of awareness on a very influential day.

“Songs from SAFE through the Arts” available on CD Baby

Art is a powerful vehicle for social change and music is an especially effective tool in engaging young children in the process of learning. Because of this fact, we have recorded nine original empowering songs, which, along with the puppets skits, are now an integral part of the program. The CD of songs, “Songs from SAFE through the arts” is not only being used as a tool of positive reinforcement by the classroom teacher after conclusion of the seven-week program but is also being sold to the general public on CD Baby, Amazon, and iTunes. All proceeds from the sales of the album directly benefit the SAFE through the arts program. Thanks to Kristen Amrhein for her work overseeing the recording legalities. www.cdbaby.com/cd/azaleablossom

Featured Volunteer of the Month

In honor of International Womens Day, the featured volunteer of the month is Azalea Blossoms founder, Margaret Jean Bernstein. Ms. Bernstein has spent literally hundreds of volunteer hours in the last few years working on getting arts based bullying prevention education into urban diversely-populated public schools. Initially, Ms. Bernstein established Azalea Blossom, Inc. as the non-profit 501c3 sister organization to her music publishing company, Growing Azalea Music in order to facilitate musical projects aimed at Social Awareness. Ms. Bernstein is also an award-winning singer-songwriter, composer, and flutist internationally known for her Socially Awakened Songs and Uplifting Instrumental compositions in addition to being a dually certified educator in New York State.

A graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music (BM, flute performance) and Arizona State University (MM, flute performance), Ms. Bernstein’s recording credits include four solo albums released on her Growing Azalea Music record label. She is also the songwriter for all of the songs on the “Songs from SAFE through the arts” CD. Two decades of experience as a classroom music teacher in rural and urban communities in California and New York State coupled with close encounters with domestic violence lead her to create the SAFE through the Arts bullying prevention program in 2007. A voting member of the Recording Academy, she is the founder of the Youth Sahavas, an annual retreat for teenagers held in South Carolina. To read her full bio, please visit www. http://www.azaleablossom.com/about/team/

To read the blog on her adventures, please visit http://www.margaretbernstein.com/blog

Follow us on all of our new Social Media accounts

We have been working very hard to bring everything Azalea Blossom to social media. This had lead to the creation of many new accounts in addition to our old ones. On Twitter, we can be found at @azalea_blossom7, @BricksInTheWall, and @SAFEThroughArts. On Instagram, we can be found at @safethroughthearts and @bricksinthewallproject. We also have a new YouTube channel that we are very proud of! On it, you can find the music video for Bricks in the Wall and the SAFE through the Arts promotional video.https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCVeIf6ik4brTWhU7FZrp_9w

In addition to these accounts, we are also on SoundCloud! https://soundcloud.com/safethroughthearts

Lastly, we can be found on Facebook, under the names of SAFE through the Arts and Azalea Blossom! Please be sure to “like” and/or follow us on any of these medias if you have an account.

Quote of the Month

“All else may fail, love never fails.” -Meher Baba.

With best wishes and gratitude,
Margaret Jean Bernstein Founder and Program Director
Azalea Blossom, Incorporated/SAFE through the Arts

Azalea Blossom, Inc. | 718-869-1934 | AzaleaBlossom777@gmail.com | azaleablossom.com

Inspirational People of December

Inspirational People of December:

Amy Gong

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Amy Gong is the Director of Art and Design for the SAFE through the arts program where she has been responsible for the re-design of the sixteen puppet characters for the SAFE through the arts program as well as the art work for the “Songs from SAFE through the arts” CD and the SAFE through the arts student handbook. She is currently  a sophomore at Rutgers University where she is an art and psychology double major with a minor in business administration. http://www.azaleablossom.com/about/team

Kristen Amrhein

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Kristen Amrhein has been the Director of Licensing and Marketing Intern at Growing Azalea Music since March where she has been responsible for the release of “Songs from
SAFE through the arts” as well as managing the licensing catalogue. She is a currently junior English Major at Hartwick College in Oneonta, New York where she minors in Music and Business Administration. http://www.azaleablossom.com/about/team


Emilee Namer

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Emilee Namer is the Assistant Director of Program and Development at Azalea Blossom where she oversees the website and social media accounts.  She is currently a last semester senior at University at Albany where she is an English major with a concentration in creative writing and a minor in Business Administration. http://www.azaleablossom.com/about/team

Faith Ahmed

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Faith Ahmed is a senior at Hunter College where she is a Media and Film Studies major and an Arabic minor. During the summer, she worked as the Intern Director of Social Media and Marketing. Ms. Ahmed can also be heard as the voice of Lucinda and Melinda Mouse on “Songs from SAFE through the arts”.  http://www.azaleablossom.com/about/team

Tyler Stankelis 

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Tyler is the intern Director of Marketing and Promotion atGrowing Azalea Music where he has been busy promoting the “Songs from SAFE through the arts” CD on social media sites as well as overseeing the holiday sale campaign. He is a senior at Oneonta State and studies the Music Industry coupled with Business Communication. http://www.gamusic.com/gam-team

If You Are Going -Travel Tips For Tahiti, New Zealand and Australia

Twelve Months before you go

  • Decide on your general destination.
  • Begin putting aside money for your trip.

Eight- Eleven Months before you go

  • Call the airline to book your award travel seats. (Be persistent. You may need to call every day for several weeks until seats open up. Stay flexible with your travel plans and be open to different travel options and routes).

Four-Seven months before you go

  • Once your external (International) flights have been booked, you can begin booking your internal flights in order to get the best value.
  • Begin researching and booking your accommodations. (Be sure to read reviews when booking through airbnb or booking.com ).

Two-three months before you go

  • Start looking into booking your day tours.
  • Purchase guide books for the places to which you are traveling. (Yes, you can find a lot through the internet but there will be a lot of places where you don’t have internet and you will be glad that you have them! Lonely Planet guide books are my travel bibles).
  • Begin making your pet and/or house-sitting arrangements.

One month before you go

  • Confirm any special meal arrangements with the airline.
  • Reserve and purchase train or shuttle tickets to the airport.
  • Do any last shopping. (Make sure that you have a suitable bathing suit and light-weight sturdy carry-on suitcase on wheels!).
  • Buy your international phone/computer charger, if you do not already have one.

One week before you go

  • Make sure that all your bills are paid.
  • Transfer money into the checking account connected with the ATM/Debit card that you will be using.
  • Call your credit card companies to report your international travel plans.
  • Stock up on snacks that you can bring on your trip. (In Kind bars pack well for travel).
  • Purchase any last minute personal items that you will need on your trip including sunscreen and insect repellant.
  • Stock-up on pet food.
  • Be sure to have all of your medicine refilled.