Music students and teachers in Surrey are aiming to raise money to buy pianos for schools in the city. Pictured at right is Shelley Gimbel, president and founder of Thank You for the Music Society. (submitted photo: Lori Metz)

‘Practice-A-Thon’ for music students aims to raise $25K to buy pianos for Surrey schools

Two-week fundraiser hits right notes for as many as 1,000 local music students

Young music students will practice in the name of philanthropy this month.

A two-week “Practice-A-Thon” organized by a local non-profit society aims to raise money to help buy pianos for schools in Surrey.

As of Monday (Jan. 15), pledge-collecting local students are sounding off in hopes of generating $25,000 for the cause, brought to Surrey by Thank You for the Music Society in partnership with the BC Registered Music Teachers’ Association (South Fraser branch).

The Practice-A-Thon will involve more than 50 local, registered music teachers (as team captains) and their students, an estimated 1,000-plus young musicians in the Surrey area, in support of the school district’s music programs.

The majority of funds raised through the Practice-A-Thon will be donated to Surrey School District, “to support the purchase of new pianos in schools that need them the most,” according to Shelley Gimbel, president and founder of Thank You for the Music Society.

“I grew up in Surrey, and the school music programs made a huge difference in my life,” Gimbel said. “We want the Practice-A-Thon to help keep these public-school music programs going strong, and we hope local music students will have some fun and develop some good practice habits in the process.”

• READ MORE: Non-profit society launches with fundraiser to collect pianos for Surrey students, from October 2016.

A post on the event website says Surrey School District has a “robust, thriving music program, but they have identified the need for more than 50 new pianos in schools across the district in the coming years. These pianos will support multiple music opportunities in local public schools – such as choirs, bands, jazz ensembles, musical theatre and individual practice – providing many local students with the opportunity to learn and embrace the positive power of music in their lives.”

Thank You for the Music, also known as TYFTM, thanks sponsors Tom Lee Music, piano tuner Chantal Fennell and Yamaha Canada.

“A small group of society volunteers are currently seeking additional support from local, community organizations for prize donations for Practice-A-Thon participants, as well as financial support in matching donations,” the group added.

The event is “a great chance for local companies to show their love and support for the arts, and to get involved early in an exciting new fundraiser,” Gimbel added.

“We expect that the first annual Practice-A-Thon will be a great success, and our hope is for the fundraiser to become an annual community event, growing with each year.”

(STORY CONTINUES BELOW FACEBOOK POST)

In September, Gimbel and Kelly O’Hagan of TYFTM presented a donation of $2,000 to North Surrey Secondary School’s music department, to purchase two digital keyboards, to be loaned out to several schools on a rotating basis, plus two tunings for the piano at North Surrey Secondary.

The donation represented partial proceeds from Thank You for the Music’s launch party and fundraiser in October 2016.

The society’s vision is communities “where everyone has the opportunity to enhance their quality of life through music, and is focused on projects to help realize that vision.”

In June of 2007, Gimbel hosted the first Thank You for the Music fundraiser, a benefit concert at the Stanley Theatre in Vancouver. Event proceeds were used to purchase two pianos, donated to elementary schools in Surrey and Burnaby.

In 2016, after a hiatus that involved motherhood and other significant life events, Gimbel revived the organization as a non-profit society, which is online at thankyouforthemusic.ca.

Just Posted

Surrey woman’s ‘tell-all’ book aims to help those struggling with domestic violence

Second book details abusive marriage, how people failed her

Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner bids farewell in tearful State of City Address

Outgoing mayor announces Director of Housing, looks back at Surrey’s evolution, and pokes fun at her ‘media missteps’

ZYTARUK: Hepner, to her credit, rose to the occasion

She could have used her last address to make political digs, pitches and slights. She did not.

Supportive housing opponent says 110-year-old document should prevent development

Proposed site for Cloverdale project is on land gifted to city by Joseph Shannon in 1908

VIDEO: Story surrounding new playground at Surrey hospital a real ‘tear-jerker’

Dad began planning after his son had surgery in Surrey and he saw too many sad faces

VIDEO: B.C. deer struggles with life-preserver caught in antlers

Campbell River resident captures entangled deer on camera

Scheer pushes Trudeau to re-start Energy East pipeline talks

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer questioned the Prime Minister over Trans Mountain project

Mistaken identity: Missing dog claimed in Moose Jaw belongs to another family

Brennen Duncan was reunited with a white Kuvasz that was found in Saskatchewan

Abandoned kitten safe and sound thanks to B.C. homeless man

‘Jay’ found little black-and-white kitten in a carrier next to a dumpster by a Chilliwack pet store

Police chief defends controversial marijuana seizure

Advocates said cannabis was part of an opioid-substitution program in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside

Trans Mountain completes Burrard Inlet spill exercise

Training required, some work continues on pipeline expansion

Supporters of B.C. man accused of murdering Belgian tourist pack courtoom

Family and friends of Sean McKenzie, 27, filled the gallery for brief court appearance in Chilliwack

Pot, cash, mansions: Judge divvies up illegal estate of divorcing B.C. couple

The Smiths ran a multi-million marijuana operation that spanned three counties

Most Read