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Young Clarinetist Keeps Music Alive for Elementary Students

Clarinetist and Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist Perry Choi is determined to show kids the power of music with his non-profit organization Keeping Music Alive.

What: Keeping Music Alive (K.M.A) – a non-profit organization founded by Perry where high school musicians provide lessons and instruments free of charge to elementary students in the Monterey Bay area.

When: Since 2009

How: K.M.A is tailored to work with the students as they mature in their playing. The program gradually progresses from private instruction to ensemble work, with the end goal to create a band or orchestra and perform for the public.

Perry began by cold calling music stores and teachers in the Monterey Bay area, asking for advice and instrument donations. Oasis Charter Elementary School in Salinas, California fit the bill and was interested in having Perry’s group volunteer and teach instrumental lessons once a week.

“We believe that this valuable education should not be limited to those who can afford it. Keeping Music Alive is our way of helping the community in this time of depression. By harnessing our talents to provide invaluable opportunities to the youth in our community, we hope to make a positive, lasting impact on these children's lives.”

“My hope is to give an underprivileged child the chance to experience the passion within music that I was so fortunate to experience. I hope our efforts will indeed make a difference and help many children live better lives as a result.”

READ MORE by downloading the full story and a Q&A with Perry.