While Colin Ray may be better known for his bluegrass music, when the pandemic hit and shows were being cancelled left and right, Ray’s partnership with bluegrass veteran Jeff Parker was terminated.
“The entertainment industry as a whole was changing rapidly,” he said. “I’m doubtful that it will ever return to its prior state.”
After what turned out to be a serendipitist meeting with Ray’s former math teacher from Lincoln Charter School over the summer, he was offered an opportunity for somewhat of a career change.
“She encouraged me to apply to Lincoln Charter as there was also a Spanish position opening for high school,” he said. “I thought on it for quite some time, but in the end, it was a no brainer for me. I’m passionate about the Spanish language and culture. I have always loved teaching. I have given music lessons for years. Moreover, knowing Lincoln Charter the way I do, I was a student from first to 12th grade, I know they have an abounding appreciation for the staff, students and families. I can truly describe it as my dream job.”
Ray is now a high school Spanish teacher at Lincoln Charter and he’s still singing with the Burnett Sisters Band.
“My first few weeks on the job have affirmed my love for teaching and I am certain Lincoln Charter is the place for me,” he said. “I have wonderful students and colleagues and the support from administration goes above and beyond what I ever expected.”
Ray realizes that he’s very blessed in that I get to wear two hats. He teaches what he loves Monday through Friday, then entertains on the weekends.
“Teaching students and performing as a singer actually share a lot of similarity,” he said. “In both cases you have an audience who is there to receive a message. When singing, that message is a song. With students, that message is the lesson you hope they walk out of class understanding. My delivery is key to the receptiveness of both the musical audience and the students.”