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Violinist grieves father, brings neighborhood together with balcony performances

Posted at 1:00 PM, May 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-04 14:00:20-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve seen all kinds of acts of kindness, but a Nashville woman’s creativity amidst heartbreak has helped unite her neighborhood in a unique way.

Maria Kistner Conti is a violinist who is out of work because of the coronavirus crisis. That loss was compounded by the unimaginable loss of her father, Gerhard Kistner, who died from COVID-19 in New Rochelle, New York, last month.

Out of that heartbreak, Conti began mini violin performances from her Lenox Village balcony, originally playing for just a few neighbors each night, but soon more showed up.

“My neighbors give me a reason to get out of bed in the morning," Conti said.

While she plays in memory of her father, she found as the concerts continued, her neighbors who were watching began to talk with each other.

“When they started coming out for the concerts, they started talking and getting to know each other and now they’re actually quite close,” Conti said.

Now, dozens of neighbors show up for her nightly performances, all while properly socially distancing.

While the battle against COVID-19 continues, she’s found a way to bring hope out of grief, all while uniting her neighborhood in the process.

This story was originally published by Jason Lamb at WTVF.