Young strings trio making name for itself

February 6, 2009 8:45:04 AM PST
They're united by kinship and music. And, for the Sugar Strings of Chicago, it's a winning combination. Five years ago three musical cousins got together and formed the trio. They had all started learning their instruments as Suzuki students.

Ayanna Williams, who is 17 and plays cello, is surprised at how they are received by those they play for. "The reaction from the audience is pretty surprising because of the before and after effect. Sometimes they don't expect us to play well but when we do they either cry or they're happy."

Since it was formed, the trio has traveled extensively.

Eleven-year-old Mira Williams, who plays viola, has this to say: "I wouldn't have gone anywhere in the USA if I hadn't been with this group. I've been all over the country. It's been a good experience."

Ade Williams, also 11, has been playing violin since she was 3 years old. About performing with her cousins, she says, "It's really exciting...I like having success and I like when we do well. I look forward to more performances. "

Never far away are their moms Janice Williams Miller, Donna Williams and Laura Williams, who happen to be sisters.

Janice is the trio's artistic director.

"There are so many people who enjoy their music that we had to say wait ...can't we push back a little bit their success is great but we want to temper it with their education. Right now they are growing musicians," said Janice.

The Sugar Strings can be reached at