NFF Announces First Youth Education Initiative
March 22nd, 2012
Initiative Supports Expansion of Music Program at Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County
NEWPORT, RI, March 22 – In keeping with its mission to present programs to educate young people about folk music, George Wein and the Newport Festivals Foundation, Inc. today announced its first youth education initiative, which will support the expansion of the music program of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County.
The funding, primarily raised through the Backyard Barbecue at the 2011 Newport Folk Festival®, will enable the Boys & Girls Clubs to purchase new musical instruments and music recording tools/software; hire a professional music teacher to lead programs during its school-year afterschool programs; and introduce a new music program at its summer day camp, Camp Grosvenor. This collaboration will provide the Club the opportunity to continue its educational program with the Common Fence Music Production group, including offering a six-week African Drumming Workshop led by musician/percussionist LeRoy White. Additionally, the Club can offer new music programs for its Tot-Spot toddler/preschoolers, as well as expand its Digital Beats program for its Teen Center participants as a result of this support.
“The Newport Festivals Foundation was created to continue the legacies of the Newport Folk and Jazz Festivals, and what better way to do that than to support programs that will encourage the next generation of music fans,” said George Wein, Chairman of the Foundation and Founder/Producer of the two festivals. “When Producer Jay Sweet presented the idea for the Folk Festival to support this wonderful music program, it was a unanimous decision to move forward.”
Jay Sweet added, “To build upon the programs that help kids throughout the Newport area gain a better understanding and knowledge of music while also bringing joy to their lives is a fantastic and humbling feeling. We’re excited to begin our partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs, and we look forward to not only watching the kids grow, develop and share their experiences, but also being available to help in any way.”
“We are thrilled that the Newport Festivals Foundation has decided to support the music program at the Boys & Girls Clubs. We know that music education can help provide the tools that children need to build a successful life – patience, concentration, coordination, relaxation – are just some of the benefits derived from music,” stated Joanne Hoops, Chief Professional Officer of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County. “Studies have shown that music education can help build intellectual and emotional skills that facilitate learning and strengthen academics. Music provides all of us an outlet to express feelings and relieve tension. Support from the Festivals Foundation will enable the Boys & Girls Club to expand its music programming, and offer opportunities in this area to children who might not have them. The Newport Folk Festival has such an esteemed history of bringing musicians of worldwide acclaim to Newport, and we are very proud to partner with them.”
Fore more that 50 years, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County has provided quality, well-rounded programming to youth ages 5-18. Children and teens are engaged in a variety of age- appropriate activities that strengthen self-esteem, social skills, health, and community involvement. The club strives to incorporate learning into everything that they do. Their mission is for all young people – especially those that need them most – to realize their full potential as productive, responsible, and caring citizens.
The Newport Festivals Foundation was founded by George Wein in 2010 to build up and continue the legacies of the famed Newport Folk Festival and Newport Jazz Festival. Under the auspices of the Foundation, the Newport Folk Festival presents performers who respect and honor folk music traditions, and at the same time reflect the changes in today’s musical trends. Through the establishment of partnerships with local schools and colleges/universities, the Foundation will present programs to educate young people about folk music as presented at the annual festivals. For more information, please visit www.newportfestivalsfoundation.org.
This year’s Newport Folk Festival, set for July 28-29, features My Morning Jacket, Jackson Browne, Conor Oberst, Iron & Wine, Patty Griffin, Guthrie Family Reunion, Dawes, The Head & The Heart, Deer Tick, Punch Brothers, City and Colour, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, The Tallest Man on Earth, tUnE-yArDs, Tom Morello, Trampled by Turtles and many others. For the complete line-up, log on to www.newportfolk.org.
Tickets for the Newport Folk Festival are on sale now at a href=”http://www.newportfolk.org” target=”_blank”>www.newportfolk.org and www.ticketmaster.com. For general information, craft vendor information or to leave a message for festival staff, call the festival hotline at (401) 848-5055.