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April, 7

Through 'Stump the Maestro,' musical couple entertains a charmed audience

Peter and Veronica Fuchs know how to put on a show, and "Stump the Maestro" is their runaway hit.

Peter, 91, is a former composer and conductor, while Veronica, 87, is a retired Broadway singer. They live in a senior community near Miami, and at the beginning of the pandemic, the couple started a Facebook Live show called "Stump the Maestro," streamed daily from their apartment. It began as a way to entertain neighbors they could no longer visit with, but word soon spread, and viewers began tuning in from all over.

Each show begins with Peter playing some show tunes and Veronica asking viewers if they can name the songs. Veronica then fields requests — typically jazz standards, Frank Sinatra, more show tunes — and while Peter knows most of them, if he does get stumped, he researches the song and plays it the next day. To close out the show, Peter performs his latest original composition: "Wear a Mask."

Peter told The Associated Press the couple enjoys interacting with their diverse audience. It's "nice to be able to make people happy," he said. One regular viewer, Toddi Jacobson, told AP that "Stump the Maestro" has "provided so many of us with beautiful music, laughter, friendship, and a feeling that we are connected."

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