Across the country, our public schools are experiencing deep cuts in many of their performing arts program. In an environment such as this, a child's access to arts education is largely a function of his or her parents' income. This obviously leaves many children, particularly those that come from economically disadvantaged neighborhoods, deprived of much needed exposure to the vibrant and uplifting power of the arts, and represents a grave injustice in a society that has so much. This is unacceptable and we, as a community can do something about it...right here...Right Now.
That is why I have launched the Young People's Freedom Song Initiative, a community supported grassroots music education project. The Initiative is an interactive exploration of the Freedom Song tradition born during the time of the American Civil Rights Movement, designed to educate, elevate, and assist young people in finding and lending their voice to the ever emerging story of humanity.
I have already been offering these programs to schools, community centers, churches and juvenile justice facilities all over Nashville, TN. and the surrounding areas at highly reduced rates or at no cost. However, going forward I would like to offer the full range of programming:
FREE of CHARGE!
HELP me do this by your small monthly contribution of $5
(less if you have to, more if you can).
Your patronage would allow me to:
- DELIVER HIGH QUALITY MUSIC EDUCATION experiences to students who might not otherwise be able afford it.
- PREPARE MULTIMEDIA LESSONS that could be used by other teachers in the classroom.
- HIRE VISITING ARTISTS to come in and share their talent with the class.
- TRAIN ASSISTANTS, hire musicians, and tech support to work with the youth at concert time.
- CURATE SOCIAL MEDIA RESOURCES so that students can dive deeper into the subject if they wish i.e. youtube, pinterest, twitter, facebook, websites, etc.
- CREATE OPPORTUNITIES for these young musicians to perform their music for their community.
- Offer all of this AT NO COST to community groups, schools, and choirs.
My work with young people is very dear to my heart and has included a directorship with the Children’s Theatre Company of New York City, workshops in conjunction with the Sarah McLachlan Music Outreach Program, as well as several tours in recent years across Australia as a regularly invited workshop leader at the Festival of Voices in association with the University of Tasmania Conservatorium of Music. I am also honored to presently serve on the Education Curriculum Development Committee of NMAAM (National Museum of African American Music) coming to Nashville in 2017.