Grant to add dozens of new instruments to LPS orchestra program

10/11 NOW at Ten
Published: Mar. 8, 2023 at 7:10 PM CST|Updated: Mar. 9, 2023 at 7:22 AM CST
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - Lincoln Public Schools orchestra classes will be able to tune up and try out dozens of new instruments with the new grant they received.

LPS was recently awarded a grant from the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation that will allow them to purchase around 120 new instruments for the program.

The $120,000 grant will be used to replace older instruments and expand the amount that they have at five LPS schools with he highest free-and-reduced lunch rates. The LPS schools include: Belmont, Clinton, and Hartley Elementary schools as well as Goodrich and Park Middle Schools.

“You can express yourself, you can say what you want to say,” Yman Saleh, an orchestra student at Goodrich Middle School said. “You can say it through music, that’s what you can do when you’re in orchestra.”

For many young musicians like Saleh at Goodrich, the orchestra is an outlet and an escape. The grant will give more students the opportunity to learn music and play an instrument.

“We’ll get about $25,000 worth of band and orchestra instruments,” Orchestra Director Sarah Baker said.

This will help replace older instruments, expand the existing inventory, and allow more students who can’t afford to buy or rent an instrument to participate.

“If the instruments live at the schools, it’s a lot easier to get them in the hands of kids who want to play them,” Baker said.

The grant will add 117 new instruments like violas, cellos, basses, and beyond which means there are fewer barriers in the way for any student who may want to try it out.

“Getting those new instruments would help kids maybe be more inspired to play by getting kind of a fresh new start at something,” Marley King another orchestra student said.