Originally published in The Clarinet 50/2 (March 2023).
Printed copies of The Clarinet are available for ICA members.
SPOTLIGHT ON ICA INSTRUMENT DONATION PROGRAM RECIPIENTS
by Jessica Harrie
During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the ICA introduced an instrument donation program. To date, we have received a total of 35 instruments ranging from student models to professional-level instruments. These clarinets were in varied condition and the ICA has partnered with repair technicians across the United States to bring the instruments back to playable condition. These clarinets are being repaired by Lisa’s Clarinet Shop, Mike Lomax of Lomax Classic, Sean Wahl from Buffet Crampon, and Glen Sargent from Second Wind Music.
In the December 2022 issue of The Clarinet we featured more stories about this program, and now we are pleased to introduce new recipients in this issue.
Miles DeCastro of North Country Winds in New York donated two wonderful instruments that he personally repaired and several Legere reeds which were recently sent out to two students.
The first student, Journey Fuentes is a high school student in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and a private student of Alondra Nina. Journey has been playing the clarinet for four years and recently made the top band at his high school despite not having a good working instrument to depend on. Journey had this to say about his musical future and being a recipient in this program:
I would like to go to college for music theory and become a great musician. I want to play in an orchestra and maybe become a band director, as I would love to teach people how to love music just as much as I do. Music has become my passion, and I won’t stop until I achieve my goals. Thank you so much for this opportunity to receive a better instrument. This just puts me one step closer to becoming the best musician I can be.
The second donated instrument from Miles DeCastro went to Maryjane Onyinye Igboanugo from Lagos, Nigeria. Maryjane has recently started her undergraduate degree in clarinet performance at the University of Memphis where she is studying with Robyn Jones. Maryjane had this to say about the ICA Instrument Donation Program and what it means to her:
As a clarinetist from this part of the world [Africa], the challenges I have come across are quite different from the norm, from the lack of available and professional instructors in schools, to the lack of sound music programs … Thank you ICA for donating a clarinet to me. This donation is not just for me, but your generosity goes to all the music enthusiasts back at home that also have goals and aspirations in music. One day, when I have enough knowledge and resources, I would give back to society, help improve the music institutions back at home, and encourage others to not give up on their own journey.
The ICA was also able to send three student level clarinets donated by Cindy Epling, Debbie Olson, and Kenneth Ewald to the New Apostolic Church Music Program in Lomé, Togo (Africa). These instruments were repaired by students in the Clarinet Repair Classes offered by Lisa’s Clarinet Shop. New Apostolic Music Director Christopher Filander wrote to us in search of instruments to help expand access to music learning and performance in the Lomé region. Christopher had this to say about the program and the donation:
On Saturdays, we offer music lessons to the children of the congregation. The instruments we have include recorders and melodicas and thanks to your donation we are able to add clarinets! The ensemble consists of 13 members, and we mainly provide music during divine services. At a later stage we are planning to expand our music program to Kpalimé which is about 200 kilometers outside of Togo. Words cannot express the joy in the recipients’ eyes. “Merci beaucoup” was uttered many times from our students.
We are immensely grateful for the support for this program and hope that we can continue to help provide instruments for students in need. If you would like to donate a clarinet, sheet music, or clarinet accessories as part of the ICA Instrument Donation Program, or if you know a student that would benefit from this program, please contact ICA Executive Director Jessica Harrie at [email protected].
You can also support this program through a donation to the ICA’s Centennial Fund at clarinet.org/giving/donate.