Elementary school students practiced hard all year long learning music fundamentals and performance skills with trained teaching artists from Grand Vision Foundation’s Meet the Music (MTM) program. MTM is now at 20 elementary schools throughout L.A. County, bringing weekly music education to over 3,500 students during the school year in K-5th grade classrooms, with courses that include Recorders in Schools, Roots of Music Program (RoMP), Strings in Schools and the Percussion Program.

This April and May, all 3,500 students had the opportunity to demonstrate their new-found musical skills by singing, playing percussion, recorder or violin for their family and friends at culminating recitals held during the day at their schools. Additionally, some advanced 5th-grade recorder students performed for the community at a public recital at the First Thursday ArtWalk, on May 4th in downtown San Pedro.

A Recorders in Schools student at Leland Street Elementary practices for the upcoming recital

At the school recitals, students presented a repertoire of songs based on the interest of each class and what they had learned throughout the year. The students had a wide range of musical tastes. For example, Recorders in Schools students at Wilmington Park chose to perform Foreigner’s Eye of the Tiger and Park Western Elementary students played Santana’s Oye Como Va. After her son’s Percussion Program concert at Park Western Elementary, a parent shared that MTM classes had allowed her son Luke to talk more openly about his experiences at school.

On May 4th, 26 brave young Recorders in Schools students volunteered to perform at San Pedro’s First Thursday ArtWalk. Under the direction of MTM teaching artist Kathryn ‘Ms. Kathy’ Bailey, the students performed with peers from several L.A. Harbor area schools. “This event was an amazing experience and opportunity for these recorder students and their families.” said Grand Vision’s Education Manager, Sukari Reid-Glenn, “The students proudly represented their schools and played so well while immersing themselves in a fun, community event!”

We are so proud of the work of our Meet the Music students who have gained new musical skills and confidence through their recitals. They can take their new love of music into middle school and beyond. MTM staff, teaching artists, classroom teachers, school administrators and Grand Vision supporters have worked together to make MTM a successful program. Thank you to everyone who has helped make this year a success!

Grand Vision Foundation’s Meet the Music is supported, in part, by the California Arts Council, Chorus America, Crail-Johnson Foundation, the Dwight Stuart Youth Fund, Kenneth T. & Eileen L. Norris Foundation, City of L.A. Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture, Pasadena Show House for the Arts, and U.S. Bank Foundation.

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