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A Winter Music Showcase presented by the Grace Fisher Foundation

Grace Fisher composed a piece for the upcoming Winter Music Showcase on December 21. (Photo: Beth Farnsworth)

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The second annual, A Winter Music Showcase, presented by the Grace Fisher Foundation, drew a large crowd at Santa Barbara High School.

"The main difference this year is that it's going to be kind of centered around the theme of Polar Express," Fisher said. 

In a bittersweet twist, the December 21 performance date marks five years to the day when Fisher became afflicted by Acute Flaccid Myelitis, a polio-like syndrome that attacked her spine and left the then-high school senior paralyzed from the neck down. 

The condition also left Fisher unstoppable. 

"I've also written a piece that the Youth Symphony is going to be playing so that should be really fun to see come to fruition," Fisher said. "There wasn't a clear inspiration for this piece this year -- it started with a melody in the flutes and kind of just evolved from there."

The 22-year-old is now a junior at UCSB, majoring in Music Composition. Fisher is also an accomplished artist. Many of her paintings are available in the form of beautiful notecards. According to her foundation, Fisher's 'Music and Art Therapy helped restore her spirit, motivation and love of life in spite of the continuing paralysis. The Grace Fisher Foundation is her way of bringing this healing therapy to others with disabilities.'

The event showcased dozens of local singers and musicians, each one holding a special place in the 22-year-old's heart.

"All of the groups that are featured are groups that I was apart of when I was in high school and they've just made such a huge impact in my life and so I'm just proud that my foundation can continue to support these programs."

The concert completely sold out both this year and last year.

"The show really wouldn't have been possible without the community support and so I'm just really thankful for the Santa Barbara community," Fisher said. 

To learn more about the Grace Fisher Foundation, click here: https://www.gracefisherfoundation.org/

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Beth Farnsworth

Beth Farnsworth is the evening anchor for KEYT NewsChannel 3.