MUSIC IN THE SCHOOLS
As music programs in schools continue to decline, the Music Performance Trust Fund has been increasing its support and commitment in this area. At present, approximately 35% of available funds are earmarked for in-school programming. The MPTF is proud to co-sponsor programs that not only present live music to the children, but also incorporate historic, instrumental and theoretical workshops. To continue its funding of these invaluable programs, MPTF is broadening its local and nationwide search for philanthropic support. Below represents just a few of MPTF’s invaluable school programs.
The MPTF supported 528 school program performances during our 2022-23 fiscal year. Over $660,000 was committed to fund these events, the largest music education expenditure in over two decades. From contemporary jazz and Latin jazz, to big bands, and from opera to chamber groups and full orchestras, professional musicians brought opportunities for musical discovery to young people from kindergarten to 12th grade throughout North America.
Professional musicians are often educators themselves, earning advanced degrees and vast stage experience. Their school program performances introduce students to musical diversity, the rich history of musical composition, and the array of instrumentation, from brass to woodwinds, strings to percussion.
The MPTF has continued its recent efforts to join other not-for-profit organizations to bring live music to classrooms and assemblies throughout North America. These relationships include the Save the Music Foundation and a renewed relationship with Young Audiences Arts for Learning. The MPTF and Young Audiences began partnering over sixty years ago. However, the joint efforts were phased out in the 1990’s. New programs are currently being reviewed to re-establish this venerable collaboration.
Examples of how live music is used educationally include:
A full orchestra performance of standard repertoire for children reinforced musical education concepts taught to them during school visits earlier in the season. Music Bridges brought a vision to awaken excitement in all of the 10,000 students in the Beaufort School System through an incredible live music experience, as well as providing direct interaction with the musicians themselves.
The students engaged in active participation with two chamber ensembles: a string and a woodwind quintet. They learned to read from score excerpts while sharing the emotional reaction to the music, playing alongside these professionals.
A short “History of African American Classical Composers” program was provided by a full orchestra. Approximately 1,100 fifth graders participated in the program.
Asbury Park, NJ
Students were exposed to an “American Music, Jazz and Swing” program. The history and development of the authentic sound of the Big Band era of the ‘30s and ‘40s was part of a live presentation that included the opportunity for students to play with the group and to be mentored by professional musicians.
St. Louis, MO
A series of performances provided a history of several great musical theater shows, as well as demonstrations of each unique instrument in the orchestra. These events introduced music from Porgy and Bess, The Sound of Music and The Wiz, among many others.
“The Sounds, Science and History of Traditional Jazz” program included involving students in simple experiments on the basic principles of acoustics. The live performance featured early jazz styles such as blues and Dixieland jazz.
Music education opens windows in young minds. Engagement with the arts is essential for a well-rounded education. The Music Performance Trust Fund considers our investment in educational endeavors to be a hallmark of our musical grants.