A Merrick teenager who uses music to lift the spirits of her ailing mother is sharing her story in the hopes that it will inspire others to overcome challenges in their lives.
Samantha Horowitz, a 13-year-old Merrick Avenue Middle School student, co-wrote “Brave The Storm” with her mother, Tara Notrica, and American Idol finalist Robbie Rosen. The inspiration for the song came from Notrica’s battle with a rare hematological/immunological disorder called mast cell disease.
“It was so bad at times that I was close to death at one point and both of my kids had to go through this for most of their lives,” said Notrica, 53. “I want this song to inspire others of not losing hope and to keep moving forward.”
Notrica, who is currently going through chemotherapy and is waiting on a bone marrow transplant, said her music therapist would show up and give her the determination to continuing fighting through song. Her daughter, who was only a year and a half when her mother was diagnosed, also sang to Notrica.
She and Samantha, who posts YouTube videos of her songs under the name Sammi Singz, got into contact with fellow Merrick resident Rosen. All three of them then came up with the song, which is now available on iTunes and Apple Music.
Samantha is now a finalist in the 2017-2018 Metropolitan Youth Orchestra Concerto and Vocal competition. She will be performing the “Brave The Storm” at the Congregational Church of Huntington in Centerport at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 7.