BROOKFIELD (WITI) — A musical mother-daughter duo from Brookfield is set to perform as part of President Barack Obama’s second inaugural festivities on Monday, January 21st.
Gela and Anatalia Ashcroft say they’re still in shock they get to play at such an important event, but for this family, a lifetime in music has led up to this moment.
Anatalia Ashcroft started playing the violin in fourth grade. Her mother, Gela is a professional musician who gave her daughter a few pointers.
“All of a sudden, a couple of years ago, it just flowed. You knew it was more than what they taught in school. It was a gift,” Gela Ashcroft said.
Now, Gela and Anatalia are taking their gifts to one of the biggest stages in the world.
The 16-year-old Brookfield East High School sophomore and her mother will play at the Inaugural Prayer Breakfast.
“She’s one of the people who really inspired me to really love music, so it is really exciting to be able to play with her,” Anatalia Ashcroft said.
“After spending your life playing music — you never anticipate that you’re going to be able to play and sing for the president,” Gela Ashcroft said.
Gela has a degree in film scoring from USC and has performed with the Milwaukee Chrous. She was asked to arrange the music for the prayer breakfast by an old friend involved in the planning.
“We didn’t get the call until a week before Christmas, so it’s been rather short notice trying to get everybody ready and everybody set with their music,” Gela Ashcroft said.
Anatalia Ashcroft says the biggest audience she’s played for is about 100 people. The breakfast will include 5,000, including the first couple.
“I’m pretty excited. It’s pretty weird to think this is all going to happen because it is so big and bizarre. But it will be really fun, and I’m really excited to do it,” Anatalia Ashcroft said.
Anatalia Ashcroft said she’s not really nervous to play the violin for President Obama. She says she will probably be more nervous afterwards, if she has the chance to meet him.
The Ashcrofts are in Washington, D.C. and will play at the breakfast on Monday morning.