All public school students who want to participate in Marysville instrumental music activities may soon be able to do so. That’s the goal of a new program called Marysville Music4Life, according to Superintendent Jason Thompson.
Initial funding to start and sustain the new program is being sought by the Marysville Music4Life Booster Club, led by resident Lee Hudson. Other officers are secretary Amy Kiffe and treasurer Deanna Hudson. The group is comprised of about 15-20 local enthusiasts.
Music4Life ( www.Music4Life.org ) is the non-profit that acquires “lovingly used” musical instruments from adults who no longer need them, repairs them (if possible) and then provides them at no charge to participating public school districts for use by students in need. Music4Life also operates nine other programs supporting Auburn, Bremerton, Edmonds, Everett, Highline, Kent, Northshore, Seattle, and Shoreline Public Schools. The program acquires used instruments from those who understand that their highest and best use is to put them back into play. Music4Life also accepts donations to help pay for instrument repairs.
“The Music4Life program to our district will open doors for many of our students,” says Superintendent Thompson. “Music4Life has a long history of working with local public school districts to provide instrumental music opportunities for students. This is exciting for the Marysville School District and we are appreciative of our community members who have joined in this effort.”
“We are proud to be a part of this program and can’t wait to see the success of Music4Life in Marysville,” says Lee Hudson. “The Marysville School District has a free-and-reduced-lunch-rate of nearly 47 percent, meaning that the students of many families are likely to need help in acquiring a musical instrument to participate. We can do this. And should.”
The new Marysville effort will be led by the “Marysville Music4Life Booster Club” recently authorized by the Music4Life Governing Board. The Marysville booster club currently is comprised of Lee and Deanna Hudson; Kiffe; Maria Ascencio; Bob Clark; Melissa Cook; John Dougherty; Elizabeth George; Elva Henry; Jolanta Perry; Luz Romero; Marysville instrumental music teacher James Orr serves as a representative for the school district on the booster club. Also serving from the school district are Jodi Runyon, Director of Engagement and Outreach, and Brynn Marcum, Director of Curriculum and Assessment.
Mark Wilder, local instrumentalist/composer and owner of Wilder2 Marketing Partners, serves as the Music4Life Program Coordinator. Other community members who are interested in kids, instrumental music or education are welcome to participate.
The booster club develops resources for musical instrument repairs. Music4Life has relationships with several local musical instrument repair shops, including Bigfoot Music of Marysville/Arlington, Kennelly Keys Music in Lynnwood, Ted Brown Music in Tacoma and Hammond Ashley Violins in Issaquah. All vendors provide discounts to Music4Life for instrument repairs, as well as for purchases of new musical instruments. A downloadable Music4Life Donor Form must accompany all donated musical instruments.
Music4Life enjoys the support of notable music advocates and other community leaders. Gerard Schwarz, world-renowned conductor laureate of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra, has endorsed the program, saying, “This wonderful program begins with children in elementary school at a time when, if they’re interested and talented in any way, they have the greatest chance of success. Many people tell me of the impact that direct knowledge of instrumental music has had on their lives. We intend to give this advantage to all our children.”
Music4Life™ is supported in part by grants from 4Culture (formerly the Seattle-King County Arts Commission); the Highline Schools Foundation; the Everett Public Schools Foundation; OpenSquare; Knossos Foundation; the Hazel Miller Foundation; the Auburn Schools Foundation; the Kent Arts Commission; various local Rotary, Lions and Kiwanis clubs; the Community Foundation of Snohomish County; as well as by the law firm of Garvey Schubert Barer; Seattle Symphony Orchestra; the Seattle Folklife Festival; Rafael Carrabba Violins; Encore Media Group; Lamar Advertising; 98.1 Classical KING FM; KNKX Radio; GMA Research; Cascade Symphony Orchestra; Randy Oxford Entertainment; the Stacy Jones Band; the Edmonds Center for the Arts; and others.