Some of the walls at New Beginnings Church in Richmond Hill are now graced by beautiful murals thanks to three talented young people. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg for these three youngsters.
At 18, 15 and 14, Richmond Hill residents Alicia, Caesar and Carolina Perez appear to be quite the child prodigies.
Besides all three possessing an amazing knack for painting, all are talented musicians as well. All three currently have their artwork displayed at the Leahy Gallery, and they perform live music together as the Perez Trio.
"Everything we try to do, we do as a family," said Alicia.
They hope to one day land a record deal and record an album of their own. Based on all accounts of those who have heard the trio perform, that aspiration is not out of reach. Alicia plays violin and viola, Caesar plays guitar, bass and trumpet, while Carolina plays piano and cello in addition to vocals.
Currently, the trio performs at weddings and a variety of other functions. They just played for RHMS during a Cinco de Mayo assembly. They play regularly for Arts on the Coast events and as part of the Savannah Youth Orchestra. They recently played at a gallery opening in Pembroke and are booked for an upcoming performance in downtown Savannah. The group performs regularly at Pastor Steve Lane’s New Beginnings Church’s Sunday service.
"The average American family takes for granted the opportunities they are granted here in America," said Lane. "The Perez children have pursued and taken full advantage of those opportunities. That’s the true American Dream and for many that dream has faded."
The Perez family, headed by parents Nuria and Rolan moved to the United States from El Salvador 11 years ago due to Rolan’s work. Nuria said another deciding factor in the move was the fact that all of their extended family had already moved from the U.S. They also believed their children would have more opportunity here. Judging by the measure of success the children have already experienced, they may have hit the nail on the head.
They blame much of their success and inspiration on their father who is also an artist. Their mother takes a "manager" role in the family by coordinating events and transporting them to their numerous art and music expos.
Alicia, the eldest of the children, has already catapulted toward a successful future. In addition to attending Armstrong, where she is majoring in art with a minor in music, Alicia is an art and music teacher at Savannah State."My dreams for the future are to open an art gallery and also to travel to countries that do not have music to perform and open their eyes to the arts," said Alicia.
Caesar just finished up the eighth grade at Richmond Hill Middle School. As part of Dr. Emory Warnock’s RHMS band, he went all-state with bass and advanced to the district competition with trumpet. He helped the band as a whole get best in state this past year.
As if that isn’t enough, Caesar was a captain on the RHMS soccer team. That is where his dreams and aspirations lie. He wants to become a professional soccer player, ideally in Spain or Europe. He is also an honor student in academics.
Carolina is also an honor student in her studies at Richmond Hill High School. In addition to all she has going on, she was involved in six RHHS clubs this past school year.
"I feel so blessed," said Nuria. "My husband and I are so rewarded and grateful to God for our amazing children."