When it comes to learning new skills later in life, many people shy away. But for others, such as Nancy Beeghly of Youngstown, Ohio, it can be a rewarding experience. Beeghly, aged 72, has spent the years since she retired learning to play the cello. She is a Super Senior Star who demonstrates that when it comes to learning to play music, age is no obstacle.
At first, Beeghly was unfamiliar with the instrument other than its deep, rich sound. The proper technique for coaxing pleasant sound from its thick strings was a mystery. But she was motivated to learn. With the encouragement of teachers and other cellists, she pushed through the hurdles of doubt about whether it would even be possible to learn such a complicated instrument, and she gave it a shot.
Beeghly’s learning the cello was aided by her life experience. Her understanding of the learning process, gleaned from her time as an English teacher, paired with the persistence that made her a popular columnist for the Youngstown Vindicator, a local daily newspaper, aided her efforts. She developed relationships with other cellists, and with practice and patience, her skills developed and continue to grow.
These days, she spends time playing for seniors in retirement homes. In fact, Beeghly is one of the more popular musical performers in her area. Her age does not hold her back. Beeghly has learned in her fourteen years of bowing, fingering, and plucking that age is just a number, and music is a way to keep the mind sharp and to maintain some vitality in old fingers.
Beeghly is a Super Senior who inspires other seniors to pick up that instrument they have always admired from afar. Becoming a cellist later in life has brought Beeghly greater happiness than she imagined it would. While learning to play an instrument is not without frustrations, contrary to what many believe, it is an option for seniors. Beeghly and her melodious music are evidence of that fact.
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