Macaroni Mom Spotlight: Louise Buzzelli

Overcoming Tragedy Through Music And Visual Art

By Angeline Sheridan May 9, 2013
"Every day is a gift, and I try to live my life that way."  Louise Buzzelli

Music and art have been integral to Louise Buzzelli's life.  At the tender age of three, she would sing Shirley Temple songs for her mother.  Her mother would record her so her father could hear her singing when he came home from work.  Louise's mother encouraged and nurtured her passion for the arts, frequently taking Louise to Manhattan to an art museum, a Broadway play or the symphony.  To pursue her passion, Louise landed a coveted spot in LaGuardia High School of Music and Art (think Fame).  She enjoyed the opportunities available at LaGuardia including meeting special artists like Patti LaBelle and being in the company of other talented performing arts students such as Jennifer Aniston.  

After high school, Louise began to develop her piano skills at the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts.  Her parents surprised her with a beautiful white piano following her first year.  Unfortunately for Louise, she lost her mother to cancer shortly thereafter.  

We All Fall Down
Louise is no stranger to tragedy.  Her father passed away a few years after her mother died.  And for a few agonizing hours, she thought she lost her husband during 9/11.  That day, Louise received a call from her husband, who worked on the 64th floor of the North Tower of the World Trade Center.  Louise - seven months pregnant- watched on TV as the North Tower collapsed minutes after hanging up the phone.  For a few hours, she was one of 102 expectant mothers who became widows that day.  Louise's husband miraculously survived the tower collapse, having landed on a pile of debris seven stories high.  A few months after 9/11, the couple welcomed a beautiful baby girl into the world, aptly named Hope.

Louise felt an unspoken connection to the 101 women who lost the father of their unborn children during the 9/11 attacks.  To cope with her emotions, she composed Song for Hope and established the Song For Hope Foundation to raise funds for the widows.  In 2003, she also organized a Mother's Day luncheon in Ho-Ho-Kus to finally meet the women and their children.  Check out the news coverage here:

Inspiring Music and Art In Children
Almost 12 years and a published book later, Louise and her husband have reached a point in their lives where they can move on from the 9/11 tragedy.  Louise has found a new direction with the recent founding of Mozart to Monet, a musical art experience that provides children the opportunity to see, hear, and feel live music and art at a very young age.

"Seeing a live violin at the age of two is an experience," says Louise.  "I hope to inspire the love of music and art in children."

The seeds that planted the idea to start Mozart to Monet came from Louise's mother, who relentlessly encouraged Louise to pursue her passion for the arts, and from Louise's two daughters now 11 and 8.  

When her children were little, Louise would drive them to Manhattan two to three times a week to enjoy all the cultural sights and sounds the city has to offer.  A typical day involved visiting museums to learn about famous works of art, strolling through Central Park West's "Strawberry Fields" to listen to 70s throwback street performers play guitar, and watching artists sketch the beauty of New York City.

Her early experiences in New York City with her daughters inspired Louise to bring a slice of the Big Apple's culture, art, and music to New Jersey's suburbs.  With encouragement from Sukha Arts Center owner Christine O'Donnell, Mozart To Monet was born.  

Not your typical music and art class, Mozart to Monet reflects Louise's easy-going, warm personality and performing arts background.   Each class features a pianist playing live music on a gleaming white piano named Josie, a heartwarming symbolic tribute to Louise's mother.  A typical music class exposes children to real musical instruments such as the violin, cello, and guitar.  And an art class may feature getting messy on the floor, or special guest appearances from accomplished artists.

You can catch Mozart to Monet's professional instructors as well as Louise, with guest appearances from her beautiful daughters and their tutu-wearing French Bulldog Lola at the River Vale Community Center on Tuesdays through May 28, 2013 and at Sukha Arts Center in Harrington Park on Wednesdays and Thursdays.  

For more information about Mozart to Monet, visit or call 201-543-4900.