Dear Tipitina’s Foundation Supporters,
Summer is usually a slow time here in New Orleans, but the staff of Tipitina’s Foundation has been very busy! After the dust settled following our large annual benefit for our Instruments A Comin’ program we’ve been sorting through all the instrument applications from local band directors and trying to finalize instrument distribution, as well as keep up with our other programs. We are very pleased to announce that we were able to donate to not one, but two youth band programs in Japan. As you may know, we added Japan’s Swing Dolphins, a youth jazz band, to our beneficiaries in response to the tragic earthquake and tsunami faced by the Japanese. We successfully sent new instruments to the Swing Dolphins with the assistance of Yoshio and Keiko Toyama.
We are proud to announce that on June 19th new instruments were successfully delivered to the children in the Bright Kids Music Club of the Tagajo-Higashi Elementary School in the Miyagi Prefecture. Bright Kids are an amazingly skilled, young elementary age ensemble and despite the struggles they face, are now more excited than ever to play. These new instruments allowed them to perform at a ceremony held in late June, one that had to be rescheduled due to hardships faced by the individual band members, as well as their instructor. After seeing the children of both Swing Dolphins and Bright Kids smiling and full of joy upon receiving new instruments, we cannot doubt the power of music to soothe, comfort, and even heal in times of hardship. When we received a packet of hand-written thank you letters from the children in the Swing Dolphins, we knew we had done a very good thing and we thank you for helping us accomplish this.
Helping the Swing Dolphins and the Bright Kids music club would not have been possible without the help of Yoshio and Keiko Toyama and our supporters from around the world. Their organization, Wonderful World Jazz Foundation, has been donating instruments to New Orleans schools for over fifteen years. Yoshio, dubbed the “Satchmo of Japan,” will be in New Orleans in August for the Satchmo SummerFest and we encourage anyone visiting our fair city at that time to not miss a performance by him. Every year, Yoshio’s wife and band, the Dixie Saints, come to New Orleans to play traditional jazz music and discuss jazz during the Satchmo SummerFest. Yoshio fell in love with Louis Armstrong and his music as a young boy. In 1968 he and his wife moved to New Orleans to learn from the masters. They stayed in the city for six years until they returned to Japan, where they continued to play and form a band. They now come back and visit New Orleans every year and generously bring the gift of music to everyone here.
The Jefferson Parish Sherriff’s Office “Band Of Excellence”, an intensive after-school marching band program that includes at-risk youth from both Jefferson and Orleans parishes, will also be a major beneficiary this year, as well as other New Orleans-area band programs that have yet to be determined. Schools will receive instruments during the Fall session and information about these schools will be posted on the Tipitina’s Foundation website (TipsFoundation.org). To date, requests from New Orleans-area band programs have easily exceeded 1500 instruments needed. The need for instruments, to keep youth both engaged and passionate and our music legacy alive, is still great in our community.
None of this would have been possible without the help of all of your donations and support. The generosity that you all have shown to Tipitina’s Foundation through GlobalGiving has allowed us to support the irreplaceable music community of New Orleans, Louisiana, and now a recovering Japan.
On behalf of the entire Tipitina’s team, I wish to thank you for your past support and encourage you to continue supporting us in furthering our goal of allowing the power of music to change lives.
With great appreciation,
Kim Katner Managing Director Tipitina’s Foundation, Inc. 4040 Tulane Ave., Suite 6000 New Orleans, LA 70119 Office: 504-309-7934
I wanted to take a moment to personally thank you for supporting Tipitina’s Foundation. As you may already know, we recently made a few changes to our annual Instruments A Comin’ fundraiser. In response to the recent tragic events in Japan, we have included in our beneficiaries Japan’s Wonderful World Jazz Foundation and the Swing Dolphins, which is a children’s swing jazz band located in Kesennuma. Kesennuma was a town that was almost completely wiped out by the Tsunami and subsequent spills from oil tankers in the area (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3uGyhuZ9ho). All the children in the band are safe, but they lost their homes, family members, and even their beloved friend who used to repair their instruments. Needless to say, they lost their instruments and rehearsal room as well. They now live in shelters, school gyms, hotels, stadiums, and makeshift houses.
Japan pledged more than $15 million in international relief after Hurricane Katrina and the federal levee failures. Jazz lovers in Japan have been bringing musical instruments and cash support to New Orleans area schools for years. Now Tipitina’s Foundation wants to return such generosity to tsunami-ravaged Japan. We are collaborating with our two main contacts with the Wonderful World Jazz Foundation, Yoshio and Keiko Toyama, which have been supporting us in our efforts to bring music to the shelters. This couple and their organization have been sending instruments to New Orleans for 17 years now (http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/fl20041219x2.html). In the months following Hurricane Katrina, the Toyamas held fundraisers and raised more than $80,000 to help New Orleans professional musicians get their lives back. Yoshio and Keiko have now identified several needy children’s bands. Their hope is to bring the healing power of music into the lives of evacuees by providing these young musicians with instruments to play in the shelters and at fundraisers. As a result of their efforts we have already outfitted the Swing Dolphins, which played their first concert on April 24th (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3ZLEVTo_4A).
As this rural corner of northeastern Japan tries to start over, we have sent $11K to the Toyama’s to help outfit this band with instruments (2 Alto Saxes, 2 Tenor Saxes, 2 Bari Saxes, 4 Trumpets, 4 Trombones, 1 Electric Guitar, 1 Electric Bass, 1 Keyboard, 1 Drum). Here is a link to the Swing Dolphin’s thank you to our Foundation for the instrument donation: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=frpy6_BGDSc. Since we have this strong support link on the ground in the hardest hit areas, we are working to raise more so that we can support other children’s bands in need. We do hope you will join us in our mission to bring instruments to the children of New Orleans, as well as to the children of these devastated communities in Japan.
For more information about Tipitina’s Foundation, and Instruments a Comin’ 2011, please visit http://tipsfoundation.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
On behalf of the entire Tipitina’s Foundation team, I wish to thank you for any assistance you can provide in helping us to further our goal.
With great respect and appreciation of your support,
Kim Katner Managing Director Tipitina’s Foundation 4040 Tulane Ave., Suite 6000 New Orleans, LA 70119
The Swing Dolphin’s band theme - On Green Dolphin Street: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=deARnQKmxG0
Dear Tipitina’s Foundation Supporters, It is Carnival Time in New Orleans, and we are ramping up for more than 30 Mardi Gras parades to roll through the city’s streets. Carnival parades are required by law to feature at least seven marching bands, a tradition that has helped preserve the New Orleans unique musical heritage for generations. Thanks to the generosity of donors across the nation, Tipitina’s Foundation has been the largest provider of instruments to these marching bands that keep our Krewes parading. Over the past ten years, we are proud of the fact that we have been able to provide more than 5,000 high quality musical instruments to more than 70 school marching bands and school music programs. But the need for instruments is growing, not shrinking. As of now, we already have nearly one thousand instrument requests from band directors in need. Through our Global Giving 'Music Instruments For At-Risk Youth In New Orleans' project, we have been able to raise over $9,000. This has helped outfit 12 new schools which we have adopted. The goal of our project is to provide more schools with new musical instruments, which in turn will help increase youth participation in our school music programs and marching bands. This is a great start, but we need your continued support to keep the Instruments A Comin’.
On behalf of the entire Tipitina’s Foundation team, we wish to thank you for any assistance you can provide in helping us further our goal. Your donations will go to support the future Louis Armstrongs as well as tomorrow's second-liners, composers and performers, music educators and historians. Thank you again for all you have done to support our youth and our Mardi Gras traditions. With gratitude,
Kim Kim Katner Managing Director Tipitina’s Foundation, Inc. 4040 Tulane Ave., Suite 6000 New Orleans, LA 70119
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