Young Composer Paints Colors with Music

Cellist/composer Elora Kares performs a movement from her work Piano Trio in G Minor with friends from Cleveland Institute of Music, pianist Young Oh and violinist Anthony Yang.

“I’m Elora Kares, a homeschooled high school junior. My autism gives me more than eight types of multiple cross-linking synesthesia, including an eidetic musical memory. I see music as living colors, called chromesthesia. I get physical bodily sensations from sounds, with triggered emotions from others. I experience numbers & letters as having distinct colors and personalities.

I compose with my synesthesia – by painting colorful layers of sound. This movement of my Piano Trio in G Minor uses the colors red, orange, purple, blue, yellow, and some green. It’s inspired by Astor Piazzolla’s “Spring Piano Trio”, which I see in the same colors, minus green. I experience a section of the Piazzolla as a gondola chase scene in Venice, above an azure blue canal, so my piece also has a water element, represented by a repeating quarter-note-triplets over sextuplets piano passage. The cello solo at the end is a lily pad, not because it sounds or looks like, or emotes ‘lily pad-esque’ energy; but I see it as purple floating on green… like Monet’s lily pads.”

This Daily Joy performance is part of From the Top’s Musicians with Disabilities Special Initiative. This spring, From the Top is spotlighting young disabled and/or neurodivergent musicians who share their talents and tell their stories in their own words.


“By highlighting the creativity and passion of young people, Daily Joy offers real hope for the future and reminds us that great art is still being made all around the country.”


Music has the unique ability to bring joy to our lives – especially in the hands of young people. Daily Joy is a reminder of music’s power to uplift, inspire, and unite.

Daily Joy is a project of From the Top. It began in the very early days of the Covid-19 pandemic and continues today to offer a much-needed respite from the anxiety and worry that we encounter in the world.

From the Top is a non-profit organization dedicated to celebrating the stories and artistry of young musicians through media and leadership programs. Learn more.

From the Top is grateful to the Richard K. Lubin Family Foundation for their generous support of Daily Joy.

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Daily Joy is a program of From the Top, an independent non-profit organization that relies on support from individuals. Your support will help ensure From the Top's work of celebrating the joy, talents, and stories of extraordinary young musicians.

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