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Busy professionals challenge themselves as amateur classical artists

MIDTOWN, Manhattan—Barbara Napholtz is an information systems analyst at a private school in New Jersey by day, but at night she practices the piano to play Franz Liszt.

“It gives me relaxation, fulfillment,” Barbara Napholtz told PIX11. “No matter how bad a day I have had, once I put my hands on the piano, it’s all okay.”

Barbara’s one of 2300 members of Amateur Classical Musicians Association, including doctors, software engineers, accountants, lawyers and even this TV reporter.

The group was founded 11 years ago by business analyst Alberto De Salas because he saw a need.

“We created a more friendly, low keyed group, focusing on meeting and making good music,” De Salas told PIX11, “rather than being note perfect.”

Besides hearing beautiful music, these ACMA members also heard from author Amy Nathan who interviewed close to 300 amateur musicians, myself included, for a new book called Making Time for Making Music, how to bring music into your busy life.

“They find time to fit in practice, or playing in an ensemble,” Amy Nathan, the author, told PIX11. “They find very creative ways to practice.”

A doctor who finds time to practice the piano explained what music means to him.

“English has the ability to communicate very specific things,” Dr. Neil Prufer, a ear, nose and throat specialist in Queens who is also an amateur pianist. “But for emotions, music is a lot better for communicating. I love it,” he added.

If you need more information about ACMA or the Amateur Classical Musicians Association, you can go to NYCClassical.com.