Classroom to Concert Hall - Sharing the Arts with At-Risk Kids
Several years ago, the San Bernardino Symphony began an initiative for community-minded individuals to directly engage local kids and their families with the arts.
Last year, we had many more requests than the funding we received could cover. This season, our goal is to expand the program to fully meet this growing demand. We are hoping you may wish to help.
You see, in the San Bernardino City Unified School District, many students participate in music classes, but few have the opportunity to expand their studies outside the classroom or with their family members. To meet this need, we created “Classroom to Concert Hall” as a way to extend the value of classroom studies while simultaneously providing families with a shared arts experience close to home.
The program works like this: A business or individual donor contributes $15 or a multiple thereof, and for each increment a ticket is set aside for donation to a local school.
Example: A $150 donation = 10 tickets
The funds are tabulated and tickets provided to interested schools based on donations received. Last year, 19 local schools participated benefitting more than 400 students. Sometimes donors request their tickets go to a specific school, but not always. Non-designated tickets are aligned with general school requests.
Some schools assign the tickets to students who are involved in orchestral programs. Others use the tickets as incentives for improved test scores, attendance, etc. We leave the details and distribution to the school leaders so they may best align the program with their on-going initiatives. All we ask is they provide enough seats so no family has to purchase anything to attend. Even the parking is free. And for those families without their own transportation, we let them know the SBX Bus Line stops right at the venue.
While you may attend all types of live musical entertainment, most “Classroom to Concert Hall” participants have never been in the historic California Theatre or heard a live orchestra perform. But when an arts enrichment experience is easily accessible and delivered through the schools based upon student achievement, family attendance is virtually guaranteed. This activity then leads to family dialogue, increased levels of cultural literacy, greater pride of place, and interest in other fine arts activities which helps grow the local economy.
“Classroom to Concert Hall” truly makes a difference, bringing the fine arts to the young people who represent the future of our community. We would love to be able to donate all the tickets, but our budget does not allow for that, so please help out if you can. And, you can be assured 100% of your donation goes to the program.