FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Keep Kids in Tune Program to Reach 50,000 Children
With Lincoln Financial Foundation Support
$279,000 Awarded in Arts and Culture Grants
Greensboro, N.C., April 21, 2008 – Almost 50,000 Greensboro-area school children will receive music education in the coming year through a $50,000 grant to the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra from Lincoln Financial Foundation. The grant will help fund Greensboro Symphony’s Keep Kids in Tune educational program, which includes In-School Ensembles, Music in the Middle and Elementary Concerts, the OrKIDStra Family Series, the Beginning Strings and Instrument Loan and Scholar Program, Greensboro Symphony Youth Orchestras, and the Symphony’s High School Initiative.
Lisa Crawford, Greensboro Symphony’s President and CEO, said the Keep Kids in Tune program has gained importance as local school districts have cut back on music education in deference to an increased focus on testing. “Music opens up a whole different world to kids and helps develop their brains,” she said. “It connects a lot of dots together, as the research has shown. And for kids who are struggling, music will open up a door to help them cope with their life.
“We’re hoping we can use the Lincoln Foundation funding as leverage to seek additional funding to strengthen this program and provide kids with a more in-depth understanding of music,” Crawford said.
Professional musicians of the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra will provide In-School Ensembles to elementary students at 72 local schools. Each session features musicians from the brass and woodwind quintets, string quartet, and percussion trio, and consists of a 40-minute performance followed by a question and answer session. These interactive sessions provide students with a basic understanding of the instruments and prepare them for a live concert experience in the spring.
“By the time a student is in the eighth grade in Guilford County they will have experienced the Symphony five times at school and been invited to see a Series performance with their parents,” Crawford said. “The Lincoln Foundation grant has allowed us to expand the program to Rockingham, Alamance, and Randolph Counties, as well.” Byron can this sentence be cut…we already are active in these counties, but may not be able to expand.
During the spring of 2009, the orchestra will present 12 live concert performances for third and fourth grade students in Guilford, Randolph, and Rockingham Counties, and for second and third grade students in Alamance County. Four Music in the Middle concerts focusing on the theme Music and Cultures Around the World will be performed for seventh graders in Guilford and concerts may be able to be reinstated in Randolph, and Rockingham Counties.
The OrKIDStra Family Series presents three concerts designed especially for preschoolers and their families. The Beginning Strings and Instrument Loan and Scholar Program brings music education directly into Greensboro elementary schools, providing children with free group string instrument classes, private music lessons, musical instruments, and supplies.
The Greensboro Symphony Youth Orchestras consist of four ensembles that rehearse once a week. “In 1999 there were only 74 students in the program,” Crawford said. “Today we have more than 200. The young musicians work with a professional conductor and coach with professional musicians. The most advanced orchestra performed at Carnegie Hall last year and will perform at Piccolo Spoleto in Charleston, S.C., in May of this year.”
Crawford said 100% of the youth orchestra members graduate from high school and attend college. “Almost half of them receive scholarships, as well,” she added.
The new High School Initiative contains an experiential learning component. Symphony musicians travel to a local high school where they perform music by a composer featured in the Masterworks concert series and coach student ensembles. Following this preparation, the student ensembles perform the work in the lobby prior to a Greensboro Symphony Orchestra Masterworks concert.
According to Crawford, the Lincoln Foundation grant will fund about a quarter of the direct costs of the Greensboro Symphony’s 2008-2009 education program. “Every year we struggle to produce these concerts and many things people don’t think about must be cut,” she said. “This grant will allow us to take a deep breath and think about enriching our program and making it better.”
The Greensboro Symphony Orchestra grant is part of $279,000 in arts and culture grants that Lincoln Foundation recently awarded to 13 nonprofit organizations in Greensboro.
Major arts and culture grants:
- United Arts Council of Greater Greensboro – A $71,000 grant to support the work of more than 50 arts organizations, artists, and teachers delivering arts programs and services to the community. United Arts Council provides programming, marketing, advocacy, facility development and management, arts information, technical services, and community development assistance.
- Eastern Music Festival – A $50,000 grant to support the 2008 Saturday Evening Festival Series of five concerts featuring the Festival Orchestra as well as to provide free admission to students, the elderly, and underserved members of the community.
- Greensboro Children’s Museum – A $25,000 grant to help fund an arts teacher for the recently-refurbished Creation Station arts area and provide a meaningful visual arts experience for children visiting the museum.
Other arts and culture grants awarded:
- $15,000 to Triad Stage to underwrite its season-opening play, The Night of the Iguana.
- $10,000 to Broach Theatre Company for Ragamuffin Theatre, a project that produces live adaptations of favorite children’s stories for children in the community, regardless of means.
- $10,000 to the Community Theatre of Greensboro to provide free admission for middle, high school, and college students to Periphery, a play about the 1960 Woolworth’s sit-in, commissioned to celebrate Greensboro’s bicentennial.
- $10,000 to the Greensboro Ballet for its Summer Ballet Festival, providing classes for young ballet students and allowing them to rehearse with resident professional dancers and perform with them in the community.
- $10,000 to the Music Academy of North Carolina for its annual Ice Cream & Music Festival, a community-wide event that raises funds for need-based financial aid and tuition assistance for children with special needs.
- $10,000 to the Touring Theatre Ensemble of North Carolina for free performances of the theatre documentary The Life and Times of Fannie Lou Hamer: Unsung Heroine of the Civil Rights Movement in 20 Guilford County high schools.
- $8,000 to N.C. Dance Project to further expand minority and youth access to the N.C. Dance Festival.
- $5,000 to the Center for Visual Artists for Pint-Sized Picassos On the Go, a program that exposes preschoolers to a variety of artistic media at no cost to parents and in locations that are easily accessible to families.
- $5,000 to North Carolina Shakespeare Festival for the SchoolFest Matinee program of 11 professional performances of King Lear and Much Ado About Nothing provided to school children at reduced prices.
About Lincoln Financial Foundation
The Lincoln Financial Foundation, established in 1962, is the charitable giving arm of Lincoln Financial Group. Under Lincoln Foundation guidelines, grants are made in the areas of arts/culture, education/workforce development, and human services. Lincoln Financial sets aside up to 2% of its pre-tax earnings for charitable causes that support philanthropic endeavors in the communities where its employees work. The Lincoln Foundation allocated more than $1.4 million to support nonprofits in Greensboro in 2008. Since 2006, the Lincoln Financial Foundation has contributed more than $3.8 million to Greensboro-area nonprofits. Lincoln Financial Group is listed on THE BCA TEN 2006: Best Companies Supporting the Arts in America sponsored by the Business Committee for the Arts.
About Lincoln Financial Group
Lincoln Financial Group is the marketing name for Lincoln National Corporation (NYSE:LNC) and its affiliates. With headquarters in the greater Philadelphia region, the companies of Lincoln Financial Group had assets under management of $237 billion as of December 31, 2007. Through its affiliated companies, Lincoln Financial Group offers: annuities; life, group life and disability insurance; 401(k) and 403(b) plans; savings plans; mutual funds; managed accounts; institutional investments; and comprehensive financial planning and advisory services. Affiliates also include: Delaware Investments, the marketing name for Delaware Management Holdings, Inc. and its subsidiaries; and Lincoln UK. For more information, including a copy of our most recent SEC reports containing our balance sheets, please visit www.LincolnFinancial.com.
Lincoln Financial Foundation
Lincoln Financial Foundation