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Mountain Music Duo Joins National Concert Event to Raise Money for Disabled Children

Tenly Williams and James Cline joined forces with Kim Perlak and Martha Lopez to help a young guitarist raise money for disabled Iraqi children.

The Mountain Music Duo, comprised of guitarist James Cline and oboist Tenly Williams, has performed together for nearly a decade, commissioning new works and presenting world premieres as well as offering fresh interpretations of classical, pop, and jazz music.

In addition to providing extensive education in music and contributing to chamber music repertoire, the Mountain Music Duo also performs philanthropic events for worthy organizations promoting peace, generosity, and cultural enrichment.

“Ben & I Play for Peace” began as a single concert produced by Concordia University professor Kim Perlak, but has since inspired multiple classical musicians to join forces to further the cause of 13-year-old Ben Werdegar. Ben is a guitarist from California who has pledged to raise $1 million in partnership with CNN Hero Brad Blauser to purchase wheelchairs for disabled children in Iraq.

Tenly says, "Music brings people together in ways that makes inspiration and compassion contagious. When I heard my friend and colleague Kim Perlak was organizing a benefit concert with Ben Werdegar for Wheelchairs for Iraqi Kids, I knew I had to get involved.”

While Tenly organized a Denver, Colorado branch of this concert series, Martha Lopez, a music professor at the State University of Florida, was setting up a Sarasota concert for the same cause. On April 3, 2011 at 3pm, each city kicked off a “Ben & I Play for Peace” concert to raise money for Blauser’s organization and help Ben move towards his goal. The Denver concert included musicians Anna Psitos, cello, Kevin Garry, guitar, and Ben Altman, guitar, as well as Tenly and James. The show raised over $500!

“Ben's dedication and generosity inspired [Kim], she inspired me, and now I hope that the artists and audience at the Denver concert are looking for more ways to do good in the world," says Tenly.