The MUSIC Endowment in Lincoln was established in 2011 to support the Music Outreach Program (MOP) provide music lessons to children in financially challenged families. For those interested in learning more about the MOP or MUSIC read these nextooze.com articles MUSIC for students in financial need and MUSIC kick-off.
On Sunday, April 15th, Donna Baddeley will give a benefit concert to support the MUSIC Endowment. The concert takes place at 2:00pm at St. Paul United Methodist Church (12th and M St.). The concert is entitled: Little Known Gems for Classical Piano.
What inspired Baddeley to put together this benefit concert? Baddeley gave nextooze.com the exclusive interview into her background and interest in the MUSIC Endowment.
First of all, Baddeley shared her belief that the MUSIC Endowment is “extremely important,” she went on, “it provides the MOP the opportunity to develop financial stability. The MUSIC Endowment Fund is worthy of support to ensure a sustainable MOP.”
And why should people support MOP?
“Because of MOP, hundreds of children in Lincoln have had the joy of learning to study music privately. These are students from families that couldn’t afford to provide this opportunity without outside support. There is a tremendous need to feed the soul, which MOP strives to do.”
Baddeley illustrated her point by asking her own question: “Did you know that Beethoven was a recipient of the same type of outreach as MOP provides? The von Breuning family opened their arms and provided Beethoven all sorts of support that he would not have had otherwise.”
Baddeley’s interest in the MOP is nothing new. She shared her personal history and the history of the MOP in Lincoln.
“My piano teacher provided much untold support after a personal family crisis. Then, as an independent music teacher myself, I was approached in 1997 by Joan Reist, then president of MTNA, to learn about a program in Virginia that linked students in need with teachers, one by one. I had the opportunity to meet Joanne Haroutounian and build a foundation for beginning a similar program in Lincoln. I served as the chair until 2002. Luckily, LMTA is full of teachers with a like-minded passion of music for all. Over the years, MOP has grown to a full committee. In 2007, I was asked to guide restructuring the program to incorporate criteria for operation and to include qualified, salaried instructors. Wanda Mandigo does a fabulous job of chairing that committee today. I know how much work it is, and she is to be commended.”
The MUSIC Endowment came later, and it was during the time of restructuring that Baddeley first urged the MOP committee to continue to work to self-sustainability so that they did not rely only on grants and outside donations. Thus, she was “elated” when she learned of the MUSIC Endowment Fund. “I knew I wanted to do whatever I could to augment the principle.” So, for the concert, she secured sponsors to cover all of the overhead expenses. “Each sponsor I approached was very willing to do whatever they could to make this program a success. I am so grateful for their support. Now, anyone who donates to the benefit concert will see 100% of their donation go directly to the M.U.S.I.C. Endowment Fund.”
What’s on the concert entitled Little Gems are pieces that many have not heard before. Baddeley has found that “there are very few opportunities for the public to hear quality performances of lesser known music. There is a wonderful treasure trove of beautiful, excellent art music that doesn’t get a voice.”
But don’t worry, Baddeley makes sure that the audience appreciates the pieces she selects: “I spend two to three minutes before each selection in providing enlightening background information and images to enrich the listening experience in the hour long program. For instance, the dances and minuets of Beethoven and Mozart’s era were extremely important to cultural life.” She explained that if these composers hadn’t been good at writing minuets, it would have been a harder road to receiving sponsorship from rich patrons, and perhaps these composers never would have gone on to write their later, more well-known pieces.
Unable to select a favorite, Baddeley declared, “each selection on the program is a favorite or gem in its own right!”
You’ll want to attend this concert, discover some gems, and donate in support of future musicians in Lincoln.
Read more about the concert, Baddeley’s background and work as a musician, and how you can donate to the MUSIC Endowment Fund at this site.
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