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As the Foundation headed into 2018, instrument donations from so many generous supporters of Tipitina’s Foundation coupled with several recent school closures (that required us to reclaim the instruments) left the Foundation with a storage space quite full of instruments in good-to-excellent condition.
Knowing the needs of the school community, the staff went into action to get these to the kids! Led by the Foundation’s Community Relations Manager, Angela Thompson, the staff reviewed our list of donation requests to identify how many schools we could assist and gathered volunteers to assess the condition of each instrument in our inventory. Sophie B. Wright band director Desmian Barnes, Tipitina’s Internship Program alumnus Robert Ramson (a saxophone player and music teacher at Phyllis Wheatley Community School) and Joseph Wong (a music teacher and retired violinist with the UNO Symphony Orchestra) donated their time and experience to assess the condition of all the instruments in our care.
Once the assessments were completed and all usable instruments were identified, the staff was able to match the instruments with the requests of 14 New Orleans schools!
More than 275 instruments, plus mouthpieces, method books, music stands and other accessories have been distributed since January to Einstein Elementary,Mary McLeod Bethune Elementary School of Literature and Technology, McDonogh 35, McDonogh 42, Abramson Sci Academy, Andrew H. Wilson, Dr. Martin Luther King, Ben Franklin, St. Katherine Drexel, St. Augustine, St. Mary’s Academy, Mildred Osborne Charter School, Landry-Walker College and Career Preparatory High School and Arise Academy.
Do you have a new or used instrument to donate? We can get it into the hands of a young musician who needs it.