Forging friendships through music

Music Buddies is a unique student-run non profit organization that connects aspiring student performers (musicians, dancers, stand-up  comedians, etc.) with senior citizen communities (Retirement communities, Assisted Living communities, Senior Community Centers, etc.) to share the joy of music and dance through live, interactive performances. Music Buddies does all the background work – researching and contacting senior centers, scheduling performances, enlisting student performers and providing volunteer service forms. Performers simply show up, perform, enjoy and leave!

A non-profit initiative founded by Nishka Ayyar in August 2015, Music Buddies has grown to over 100 student performers and over 25 senior communities in less than a year. Currently, Music Buddies is offered only in the Bay Area, but we hope to launch in other cities soon.


Nishka Ayyar - Founder

"Music Buddies was inspired by my love and deep respect for my grandparents. My four grandparents have been with me since I was born and each of them have enjoyed and encouraged my sister and me to pursue the arts and have been ever willing to appreciate our performances.

Unabashedly, they clapped and cheered for me even when my clarinet squeaked or I missed the beat with my dance steps. Their encouragement and love created a unique connection between us every time I performed, making me realize the enormous therapeutic value of music. I felt compelled to bring this connection and joy to others who didn’t have the opportunity to experience them like my grandparents and I did.

In my grandparents’ honor and in memory of my late grandmother, I launched Music Buddies, a volunteer organization that enlists aspiring student musicians and performers to provide fun and engaging performances at senior centers, retirement communities, and nursing homes.

I hope many young student musicians will be inspired to work with us and join us as we pool our talents to make a difference!”

Nishka Ayyar

Nishka Ayyar graduated from the Harker School in San Jose, CA in 2019. In her time at Harker, she co-founded PromElle, a peer-to-peer marketplace for teen fashion. She loves playing volleyball and the clarinet and hanging out with friends.


Anika Fuloria - President

Anika Fuloria is an active composer, singer-songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist.

Anika has been recognized as an “Emerging Composer” by Tribeca New Music and her compositions have been awarded by the National Association for Music Education (NAfME), the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA), the Music Teachers’ Association of California (MTAC), and the National Federation of Music Clubs (NFMC).

Anika was twice selected as the sole string bassist for the California All-State Honors Symphonic Band. She has also served as a bassist for the California Orchestra Directors Association (CODA) Honors String Orchestra and principal bassist for the California Youth Symphony (CYS) Associate Orchestra.

Anika also plays jazz bass, both electric and acoustic, for the Anthem Jazz Ensemble, a jazz combo that she founded. Anika has previously played with the Stanford Jazz Workshop (SJW) Giant Steps Big Band.

Apart from the bass, Anika also enjoys playing the piano and the guitar, and writing and singing her own songs. She released her debut single “Drowning” in 2018.