Skip To Main Content

Header Utility Navigation

Logo Header

King School

An independent day school educating students PreK-Grade 12

Menu Trigger Container

Top Container


Landing-nav, don't delete

El Sistema Residency

King Music Residency: Building and Connecting Communities Through Music

King hosts an annual El Sistema Residency, in which talented musicians from King’s Middle and Upper Schools collaborate in intensive music workshops with visiting students of various El Sistema USA programs, including Stamford’s own Project Music.  The overarching focus of the residency is to inspire a connection between communities of different socioeconomic backgrounds, using the music ensemble as the vehicle through which to inspire deeper communication.

Educational Objectives:

  • Understand music as a reflection of culture and expression of identity
  • Give voice to, and amplify, perspectives from diverse lived experiences
  • Use music to inspire connections across our superficial differences
  • Explore new ways to create and disseminate music
  • Blend music from varied styles and cultures into new compositions and unique concerts

Collective Composition

Collective Composition is an opportunity for people to come together and creatively explore and express their stories, ideas and emotions through music. Collective Composition emphasizes the creation and performance of music as a process that all people can access, and offers shared experiences through which individuals, communities, and culture may strengthen and expand. Led by Dan Trahey, Director of the Archipelago Project and Collective Conservatory, students will use themes inspired by the mash-up concept to create their own original compositions.


There will be four performances associated with the residency. 

  • On Sunday, April 7, there will be a community concert, open to the public at 4:30 p.m. 
  • On Monday, April 8, the residency will conclude with morning assembly concerts for each school division at King. 

All performances will be held in the Performing Arts Center.

Featuring New Composers and Compositions

A primary focus of the residency is featuring new music from composers of today. This allows our students to connect how music is a living, breathing art form.  We will be featuring music from Giovanni Santos.  All of these composers are active in the field today and students will have the opportunity to interact with the composers over virtual master-classes. 

Guest Artists


Kaila Mullady is the 2015 & 2018 World Beatbox Champion, the 2014 American Vice Beatbox Champion, 3x Loop Station Champion and 3x reigning Beatrhyme Champion.

Kaila performs all over the world infusing beatboxing, singing, rapping, and theater to push the boundaries of creativity and show just what the human instrument is capable of.

One of the most fulfilling parts of Kaila's career has been traveling the world teaching workshops promoting expression and leadership through music. Her work using beatboxing as a tool for speech therapy led to a partnership with New York University where a class was explicitly designed to build tools in the classroom for blind students based off of her curriculum.

Whether on stage in front of beatbox fans, in an auditorium speaking to students, or helping staff training at a corporate event, Kaila has seen the benefits of beatboxing and how it allows people to open up, work together and build listening skills, no matter what their musical skill level is. Kaila believes beatboxing is the perfect vehicle to allow audiences to come out of their shell and build confidence in their voice. 

Dan Trahey: Director of Collective Composition

Dan Trahey is a musician, educator, and innovator. He was instrumental in the creation of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s OrchKids, where he currently serves as Artistic Liaison. Dan also founded the El Sistema-inspired program Tuned In at the Peabody Conservatory, where he teaches creative composition and community engagement. As tuba player with the Archipelago Project he travels the world promoting cross-genre performances and has performed for hundreds of thousands of children, specifically targeting impoverished areas with little access to live performance. He has held orchestral positions in Mexico and the United States. Trahey is part of the composition troupe Creative Connections that works to bring communities together through collective and creative composition. Dan has been featured in countless publications including 60 Minutes, PBS, NPR, the New York Times, and the Washington Post. He recently gave a TED talk at TEDx Baltimore, and was named the “Most Valuable Player in the Arts” by Baltimore Magazine.

Dan Trahey


El Sistema Origin Story

Past performances