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Instrument drive aimed to ‘keep music alive’

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“Unplayed instruments are like a silent orchestra, there is no sound, no benefit and no joy. That orchestra can be brought to life when people make those instruments available to kids who really want to learn.” – Steve Blatt, the Director of Community Programs for Colorado Public Radio.

Through the end of March CPR is holding their Annual Instrument Drive; Keep the Music Alive with the goal of collecting and distributing  gently-used instruments  to music programs throughout Colorado.

“After we (CPR) saw the impact of providing more than 125 instruments to children in nine Colorado schools (in 2009), we decided to make it an annual event,” Blatt said. “It’s part of our overall mission to support and promote music and music education in Colorado.”

The instrument drive is targeted at supporting music education in Title 1 schools, schools with a high percentage of low-income students.

“These are kids who can’t rent let alone think of buying an instrument, but they still have the desire to play,” Blatt said. “By putting instruments in the hands of students, regardless of their family’s financial situation, magical things can happen.”

According to Blatt, studies have shown that early music training helps develop areas in the brain involved with language and reasoning, critical thinking as well as listening skills. Music is also known to improve self image and confidence among kids.

“Music should be seen as essential, not a frill, because the benefits touch so many areas of a child’s life.” Blatt said. “Colorado Public Radio’s instrument drive is really important to ensuring both music enjoyment and better education for generations of students.”

CPR is asking anyone who has gently used instrument lying around their home to donate them to Keep the Music Alive at one of their nine drop off locations.

CPR will thank donors with a letter showing the appraised value of the instrument that they can use with next year’s taxes.

So find that instrument that is no longer being played and give a child the gift of music!

Photo Credit – Trombone, clarinet and violin players in the 5th grade orchestra at Lawrence Elementary. Photos by Chris Woodley of Mountain Media.

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