Lang Lang adds music to public school
Updated: 2015-10-23 11:20
By HONG XIAO in New York(China Daily USA)
Lang Lang poses for a group photo with students of the Roberto Clemente Public School 13 in Brooklyn, New York, which has been selected by the Lang Lang International Foundation for the music program Keys of Inspiration. Hong Xiao / For China Daily
Classrooms could be singing a happier tune pretty soon.
Internationally renowned Chinese concert pianist Lang Lang believes his international music foundation will orchestrate a profound impact on music education in public schools in the US.
The Lang Lang International Music Foundation (LLIMF), headed by Lang Lang himself, unveiled its latest Keys of Inspiration Piano Lab with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Oct 22 at the Roberto Clemente Public School 13 in Brooklyn, New York.
"Thank you so much for your great work in making this happen," Lang said at the ceremony, where he was greeted with cheers and applause from excited students and staff. "I think it's because we all believe in the power of music and we all believe that music can change our lives."
Keys of Inspiration is a public school partnership program for grades two to five initiated by the LLIMF three years ago. The program encourages piano performance as a means of social development for youth by providing students with a safe, creative outlet in school.
Selected schools receive a fully equipped piano lab, teaching materials and workbooks and a full-time piano teacher.
In the lab, students get classical piano lessons and at the end of the school year, each takes an examination administered by The Royal Conservatory of Music in Londaon to earn an official certificate from the conservatory and the Lang Lang Foundation.
Lang said there were now six piano labs in the US, three of them in New York.
The program is expected to serve as a model for urban public school music programs across the states, according to the Keys of Inspiration website.
"We built this program step by step and it has developed fast," Lang said. "I hope my foundation can cooperate with all public schools in the US in the future."
"Lang Lang's program has had an enormous positive effect on children," said Maxine Cameron, principal of PS 13. “I think it's worth it for every child to be involved in music."
In their new piano lab, 147 students have already begun to explore the world of music under the tutelage of foundation-selected piano teacher Xiao Jun.
Xiao said she believes that music is a universal language, one that will allow students to tap into a whole new world of creativity through the discipline of formal musical training.
"Hopefully, though this program, your passion for music will be ignited and you'll become a better person," said Lang, who added that he is on a mission to educate and inspire the next generation of classical music lovers.
The Lang Lang International Music Foundation, a vehicle for what the artist calls his "second career," seeks to use music to transform the way children relate to the world.