Monday, December 10, 2018

Click here to
sign up for our newsletter!

The Journals are the premier publications for high-quality, hyperlocal news and advertising in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Charlie Puth Rumson NJ Forrestdale
Dec 03, 2018

Former Student and Superstar Charlie Puth visits Hometown

Charlie Puth Rumson NJ Forrestdale School

Puth with music teacher Val Wagner

Forrestdale students and staff were treated to a surprise when former student and music superstar Charlie Puth popped in for a trip down memory lane. The visit was filmed for a segment to appear later this year on CBS Sunday Morning.

Students, staff, and parents were notified of the Oct. 2 filming, but only as a segment featuring music in schools and its importance in influencing children in positive ways. Forrestdale music teachers were prepared to showcase various types of lessons they plan for the students, using instruments ranging from African drums to desktop keyboards.

But no one expected the surprise guest who stepped out of the black Escalade that morning. The filming locations in the CBS segment were selected by Puth, who wanted to pay homage to his musical journey. At Forrestdale, he developed close relationships with his encouraging middle school music teachers, John Lebitsch and Valerie Wagner.

Charlie Puth Rumson Forrestdale NJ Piano

Two years ago, when Puth moved to the West Coast, he donated his home piano to Forrestdale School, where it sits front and center in the music classroom. While at Forrestdale, Puth was a part of the Jazz Ensemble and Concert Band.

The music superstar first surprised his music teachers on camera as they were teaching a class in the music room. But when he opened the classroom door, the teachers and students quickly realized what the film segment was about – with some students a bit star struck!

Puth sat down at his piano and played “One Call Away,” encouraging students to join in as he sang. He told students that he wrote the beginning parts of the hit song on the piano in their classroom.

As humble now as he was when a Forrestdale student 12 years ago, Puth answered all student questions, laughed at their stories, and offered advice to the impressionable teenagers.

Puth also shared his favorite Forrestdale memories, from the time he asked a girl to slow dance, to not turning in his English homework and having to stay in for recess. He ended with a sing-along to his popular song “Attention.”

Charlie Puth Rumson Forrestdale NJ