Atl Symphony Launches $5 Campaign For Education

23-Mar-2011 | News-Press Release

Today, Tuesday, March 22, 2011, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra is launching a $5 broad-based giving campaign, entitled, “When I Play Music.”  The 11-week campaign will focus on supporting education programs and initiatives of the Atlanta Symphony, and raising awareness of the impact of a music-rich educational experience for students.  The campaign will continue through the end of the Orchestra’s fiscal year, May 31, 2011, with a financial goal of raising at least $300,000 in small contributions (not including matching gift donations). A microsite containing giving components, informational videos, and additional campaign details is available at:

The “When I Play Music” campaign will be primarily driven by social media, and will utilize mobile giving (text “ASO” to 50555 to give $5*), online giving (, and QR Codes to enable audiences to give donations, beginning at just $5, to support the Orchestra’s vast education outreach programs and initiatives.

The John H. and Wilhelmina D. Harland Charitable Foundation, Inc. has offered a challenge grant of $25,000 to be paid when the campaign’s first $50,000 in new or increased gifts has been raised.

“The Atlanta Symphony is known best for performing great music and presenting great artists — but we are also an educator, nurturing talented student-musicians, and exposing young audiences to musical experiences,” said Atlanta Symphony Orchestra President Stanley E. Romanstein, Ph.D.  “When students have access to the arts, they achieve higher academic test scores, watch less T.V., and participate in more community service. Music impacts our lives in so many ways.  We hope the Atlanta community will support this campaign with $5 donations.”

“A grassroots campaign, very reliant on social media, is an idea whose time has come for American orchestras,” said League of American Orchestras President and CEO Jesse Rosen. “I applaud the always-innovative Atlanta Symphony Orchestra for bringing attention to the positive power of music in children’s lives, and making an effort to also widen its base of support.  I hope this campaign will inspire other communities around the U.S. to support their local Orchestra’s educational initiatives.”

“The powerful impact of a music-rich education allows kids to play an instrument, sing, and listen to music as part of the learning process, while also reinforcing confidence, teamwork, discipline, and expression of oneself,” said Morgan County Elementary School Music Specialist Kathy Ellis. “The Atlanta Symphony, through this $5 campaign, is seeking to address a void in music education for the children of our community.  As a music educator, I am grateful for this effort, and I am proud our Atlanta Symphony Orchestra continues to be a musical leader not only in the region, but also around the country.”

Offering nearly 30,000 hours of music instruction annually, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra reaches more than 45,000 students and music educators annually from 28 Georgia counties. Of those attending the Orchestra’s various educational offerings, 25% were offered free or reduced admissions from low-income communities. In addition, student musicians who stay in the Orchestra’s training programs, such as the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra and the Talent Development Program, have a 100% graduation rate from high school — and approximately 97% have gone on to pursue higher education at some of the country’s top schools, including the The Juilliard School, Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Peabody Conservatory of Music, Cleveland Institute of Music, Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and others.

The “When I Play Music” campaign has been developed in collaboration with two Atlanta-based marketing firms: i.d. and Creaxion.


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