Rosa and daughter Ana
Earlier this year, Education Through Music-Los Angeles launched “Bagels with the Band” and “Sweets with Strings” at over 10 partner schools across LA County, where parents enjoyed seeing their children perform onstage – many of them for the first time – in a fun, informal concert setting.
At Rio Vista Elementary, beginner band students proudly showed off their new instruments with group and duo performances. ETM-LA Music Teacher Dominick Mustacato shared, “Multiple students asked to perform duets with their friends. . . they had been practicing these duets at home outside of the classroom. They were inspired to search for different pieces of music that they felt were really engaging, challenge, and fun to play!”
Mr. Mustacato led the students in their performances and went through each instrument family in the ensemble, explaining the instruments in detail including their parts and what accessories they require (reeds, etc). He also gave parents advice on what to look out for while students practice at home such as proper posture, technique, and other useful tips.
Rio Vista parent Elizabeth, whose daughter plays drums/percussion, commented that “[My daughter] has been talking about being in band… she loves it. I think she’s grown from it and she loves being a part of it. Watching her right now, I was really impressed.” She continued by stressing the importance of arts education: “It’s the most important thing, music and art. It has soul and expression. It’s important to being a human being. It fills your whole body; it’s good for the brain.”
For fellow Rio Vista parent Natalie, who played recorder in her school days, having music education in school is crucial. “We’re so grateful that we have it. It’s amazingly cool that they have access to music and to instruments, too. Not just in school but they’re able to take it home and practice, and that makes it special.”
As our community deals with the effects of COVID-19, we are continuing to support our schools by sending home music activities and worksheets, as well as providing virtual music lesson and wellness videos.
In our 14th year of programming, your support will help ETM-LA continue closing the gap for low-income area schools that remain deprived of in-school, yearlong music and arts programs. We are standing alongside our schools through this difficult time, and we are more resolved than ever in our mission to support those who would otherwise not have quality access to education; nor the safety net in times such as these.
Rosa, whose daughter Ana is a beginner violin student at Norwood Street Elementary (pictured), confided: "Ana loves performing. It’s so important for her structure and growth. It truly helps my child be disciplined at school and with tests. She is thankful for the opportunity to have this program in school as they would not otherwise have this privilege."
Thank you to those who have generously given to help provide important music education services to disadvantaged schools, and to students like Ana!
Hoping everyone stays safe and healthy during this time.