Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Music Outreach Program Receives Gladys Lux Education Award

The 2016 Mayor’s Arts Awards will honor the Music Outreach Program (MOP) of the Lincoln Music Teacher’s Association (LMTA) with the Gladys Lux Education Award. This award “recognizes special initiatives in or dedication to arts education” and could hardly find a better organization to recognize than MOP.

Jessica Freeman, MOP Chair, explains that this award is “an honor and wonderful recognition of LMTA's efforts with this program to help at-risk students receive quality instruction in music.” 

“The program is run by a volunteer 9 member committee.  Thirteen LMTA teachers with Professional Status serve 50 students studying piano, voice, violin, viola, guitar, and flute. Music Outreach Students participate fully in their assigned studio teacher's events including studio recitals, participation in LMTA events, and other performance opportunities as their skills develop.”

The benefits of MOP for the community are far reaching. Besides providing lessons to students and families who would otherwise not be able to afford them, it also gives opportunities to teachers to go beyond what they might normally do in their studios and gives others in the community the chance to contribute through grants and donations to a wonderful cause. Just five years ago, LMTA had occasion to begin an Endowment fund that ensures the good work of MOP will continue for many years to come. 

MOP student and teacher performing
credit: LMTA
The students that participate in MOP are already making their own contributions to the community, as Freeman said, “in studio recitals, participation in LMTA events, and other performance opportunities as their skills develop.  All Music Outreach Teachers are encouraged to host outreach recitals for the community. These have included performances at the Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital, various retirement communities, and school performances. Several MOP students have become proficient enough at performing to secure leading positions in the school and youth orchestras and/or perform senior recitals. Others have performed for events such as the Lincoln Community Foundation's Donor Recognition Luncheon.  One MOP student was even inspired to perform on a street corner in the Haymarket to raise funds for a family he had heard about who had recently lost their father/husband and had no funds to pay for funeral expenses.  Several of the MOP students love music so much that they study multiple instruments (often by working out deals with a teacher for a second instrument) or they've quit the Music Outreach Program so that they can become more involved with school musicals and other music opportunities.”

Find out more about how you might contribute to MOP at the LMTA website.
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