Maine South co-captains give back by teaching music

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While they are senior co-captains of the Maine South girls golf team that qualified for this weekend’s Class AA state tournament, twin sisters Annie and Katie Krall are concerned with much more than golf.

The Kralls collected over $1,000 worth of music instruments — drums, guitars and keyboards — at the beginning of the summer.

They donated the instruments to the Boys & Girls Club located on the Lac Courte Reservation in Hayward, Wisconsin, which is the town they live in during the summer. The Kralls also volunteered to teach music to the young Ojibwe children who attend the Boys & Girls Club.

“They have traditional cultural instruments, but percussion and keyboards they weren’t really familiar with,” Katie Krall said. “… They caught on fairly quickly, and it was such an incredible learning experience for me.”

Annie and Katie Krall spent every Wednesday teaching music to about 30 Ojibwe children at a time. Katie Krall gave lessons on drums and Annie Krall provided guitar lessons.

“Many of them wanted to sing traditional Ojibwe songs that I really wouldn’t know, and then they would try to sing to me,” Annie Krall said. “I would try to patch together a chord progression that would make sense with what they were singing.”

Annie Krall sometimes taught chords like G and C by putting her fingers on the fret board of the guitar because many of the young students’ hands couldn’t wrap around the instrument’s neck. She said the children would then strum downward to play the chord.

The sisters tried to present their lessons in a way that was intriguing to the children. For instance, Annie Krall took requests for songs the children wanted to hear. She then showed the children how to play the chords of that particular song, which is similar to how she learned growing up.

“The number of times that I was asked to play ‘Let It Go’ from the movie ‘Frozen’ is unbelievable,” Annie Krall said.

The Krall sisters said they plan on teaching music again at the Boys & Girls Club next summer.

“Since we live up in Hayward all summer, we really try to become a part of that community — and one of the things about becoming part of the Hayward community is giving back,” Katie Krall said. “We felt that volunteering at the Boys & Girls Club would really ingrain us in a community that’s meant so much to us in our entire lives.”

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