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Bloomingdale School of Music presents Spring Benefit: Play it Forward

April 3, 2023

Bloomingdale School of Music announces the annual Spring Benefit on April 3, 2023 at 6:30 pm at Scandinavia House, 58 Park Ave, NYC. Bloomingdale will also be celebrating 30 years of the Music Access Project (MAP), its signature, three-year pre-college training program for musically talented children in need, featuring high-quality instruction and personal mentoring. The evening will include performances by MAP students and alumni, as well as guest artists. Attendees can enjoy a buffet dinner with table seating, an open bar and post-performance champagne reception, and a live raffle now online at https://go.rallyup.com/playitforward/Campaign/Details. Tickets for the benefit are $25-$100, with sponsorships available from $500-$10,000. The evening will also be live streamed for supporters who make a donation of any amount. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit bsmny.org/playitforward.

“MAP is so much more than a college prep music program. It is a gateway to exploration to the young people who enter this program, an opportunity to explore what more they are capable of,” said Executive Director Erika Atkins. “It is a community of creative music lovers, who often develop lifelong friendships and a forever fondness for the magic of this old brownstone. I mean think about this, we still have MAP alumni on our staff and faculty, and I have to say their dedication to school is absolutely invaluable to the work we now do.”

This year’s Benefit theme is derived from the MAP experience. A play on words of the common expression “pay it forward,” Play it Forward alludes to the path each MAP student embarks on with the support of Bloomingdale faculty, community members, and funders. This forward movement in their lives begins with acceptance into the program and leads them on a personal and musical journey through to college. Many MAP students go on to pay it forward as upstanding members of their own communities or even as faculty and staff here at Bloomingdale, mentoring the next generation of MAP students.

The evening will feature speakers from alumni of the MAP program, Van Lier Fellow Scholarship recipients, and performances by the current MAP students alongside faculty and guest artists. In addition to the live performances and speakers, we’ll also present a series of videos that offer an intimate glimpse into the inner workings of the MAP scholarship program.

Jared Hung – Current Van Lier Fellow Scholarship Recipient & MAP Student
Joshua Rim – MAP Alumni
Cindy Baez – MAP Alumni
Judy Woo – Current MAP Director
Ed Castro – Speaker from the first MAP class
Erika Atkins – Executive Director of Bloomingdale

“Drumming Part 1” by Steve Reich
MAP Percussion Ensemble
Taylor Austin*
Daniel Perez Ponce*
Angel Pineda*
(Coached by Eric Phinney)

“Aufschwung “, op.12 no.2 by Robert Schumann
Woodwind Trio
Honoko Saeki*, flute
Adam Garandza*, clarinet
Leigh Murphy, piano
(Coached by Olga Gurevich)

“Tango for Jam Jam” by Jack Smith
Brass Quintet
Toby Chau*, trumpet
Joshua Condori*, trumpet
Felicity Zhao*, horn
Alex Jeun, trombone
Jared Hung*, tuba
(Coached by Kevin Krumenauer)

“Piano Trio No. 1 in D minor, op. 49” by Felix Mendelssohn –
i. Molto allegro agitato
Bloomingdale Chamber Students
Bianca Dwork, violin
Sofia Sanchez-Martinez, cello
Will Itskovich, piano
(Coached by Rhiannon Banerdt)

“Spain” by Chick Corea
The MAP Chamber Jazz Ensemble
Ghair Perez Ponce*, alto saxophone
Brandon Vazquez, trumpet
Alex Jeun, trombone
Jake Edelstein, piano
Camilo Aristizabal, drums
(Coached by Kevin Krumenauer)

*MAP Students (Current)

MAP Student Quotes
“I wasn’t expecting the program to push me so much. I’m here Monday, Tuesday and we’re here until 7:00 pm. It gave me some real dedication.”
-Lancelot McCaw, Violin

“I definitely feel I’ve gotten much better compared to when I started MAP. I’ve hit a lot of milestones. My playing absolutely grew and just overall as a musician I’m able to understand more of what’s going on in the space, which is what I wanted when I came here.”
-Lancelot McCaw, violin

“If I’m in a bad mood or if I’m trying to block out anything, music is there for me. It’s really good for coping skills.”
-Venus Rodriguez, violin

“What really did it for me was the scholarship aspect of MAP. My parents aren’t able to afford lessons for me over a long period of time… MAP program is just the perfect thing that would provide with the guidance that I needed but also not have to worry about the cost.”
-Karen Matute, viola

“Another thing that comes along with Bloomingdale’s perks are the performance opportunities we get. We got to perform at Broadway Presbyterian Church… When I performed there, I walked into that concert hall, looked up at the ceiling and I was like, “Oh my gosh!”. Because it sounded beautiful… the fact that opportunity comes because of [Bloomingdale] really showed something in this program.”
-Alex Campos, cello

About the Music Access Project
Since 1992, Bloomingdale’s Music Access Project (“MAP”) has offered an intensive, yet nurturing musical environment, fostering professional and personal development, while providing guidance for students aspiring to gain entry into a university or conservatory. MAP is unique among music training programs in that it is targeted specifically to talented high school students who are unable to gain entry into similar programs due to high tuition costs and limited financial aid. Bloomingdale’s MAP program targets the youth of NYC who possess the talent to compete on an elite musical level, but lack the resources and training necessary to channel their talent into something meaningful and lasting. BSM offers the majority of MAP students a full scholarship, worth roughly $6,000 per year. Each year, between 20 and 25 students are enrolled in the program. Since the program’s inception, over 200 students have graduated the program and 99% have gained entry to a conservatory, college, or university.

Founded in 1964, Bloomingdale School of Music is dedicated to the belief that music changes lives and everyone should have access to high-quality music education regardless of economic status, race, religion, ability level, or gender. Bloomingdale is a music-driven community center where all are welcome to join and learn about music from top faculty. We are dedicated to our mission – to make music education accessible to all who want to learn – and remain focused on supporting this mission through our values. www.bsmny.org


April 3, 2023


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