Keys to Success

By Erin Miller '09
March 21, 2012

Ashton Kalhorn chose to attend Bradley partly because of its strong tennis program. And while the sophomore from Colorado Springs has proven to shine on the court as one of the top three singles players, Kalhorn excels academically and musically as well.

The chemistry business major has a perfect 4.0 GPA and is a gifted pianist. Kalhorn will put his musical talents on display for charity when he participates in the Easter Seals Piano Extravaganza on Sunday at St. Thomas Catholic Church in Peoria Heights.

Bradley seniors Jameil Abou-Hanna and James Sapp are the other pianists performing for the benefit. Abou-Hanna organized the event and invited Kalhorn, who has been playing since age 5.

 “My dad took me to piano lessons, and I have been playing ever since,” he said. “It’s relaxing and it keeps my mind busy.”

Though he’s busy with tennis and keeping his grades up so he can attend medical school, Kalhorn said he finds 30 or 40 minutes several times a week to escape to Constance Hall and play the piano.

“I don’t have time to play as much as I’d like, so it will be nice to perform for people again,” he said. “What’s even better is we’ll be playing for a good cause. It’s great that I can do something I love and get far more than just personal satisfaction from it.”

The concert on Sunday begins at 1:30 p.m. and is estimated to last about 90 minutes. It is free and open to the public, and donations for Easter Seals will be accepted.

Kalhorn is grateful that he can balance his passion for piano with his other responsibilities.

“As a student-athlete, professors and coaches are understanding of our tight schedules, especially during tennis season in the spring,” he said. “The same things that attracted me to Bradley are still what I appreciate now: the personal attention, the family atmosphere and the strong sports programs.”