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Kickoff Party Tonight for Make Music NOLA

Make Music NOLA is celebrating their continued growth from their 2011 beginning, and they are inviting the public to the Howlin' Wolf tonight to celebrate with them. Instructors from the free school for kids will be on stage, and proceeds go towards MMN. 


What began as the Youth Orchestra of the Lower 9th Ward in 2011 has grown to Make Music NOLA. In 2011, the instructors had five students. Now, the program has expanded to Central City, and it includes kids from Arise Academy, KIPP Leadership Primary, and Edgar P. Harvey Elementary.


Executive Director Laura Patterson said that the Make Music NOLA’s reach goes beyond music and touches students’ academic and personal lives.


“For one thing, focused music training on a daily basis takes discipline, commitment, it builds community, and family. It builds relationships between students and families and teachers,” said Patterson.


Furthermore, Patterson said the program enables kids to explore new areas of the city. MMN has performed at Loyola, Tulane, and the Ogden, to name a few.


The kids, grades 1-8, learn how to play violin, cello, and bass. Patterson said they are in the process of adding viola to their Central City location. Students meet Mondays-Thursdays from 3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., and the program is completely free. 


Tonight’s event will highlight some of the instructors, including The Valparaiso Men’s Chorus (led by Alex McMurray), T-Ray the Violinist, and Dave Anderson’s All Star Funk Band.


“Tonight is a great opportunity for people to come hear some of our teachers perform, and it’s also a way to celebrate the work we have done in the last two and a half years, and [especially in] the last year and a half,” said Patterson.


The New Orleans Musicians’ Assistance Foundation is sponsoring tonight’s event. Proceeds will go directly towards students' instruments. The show is at Howlin' Wolf beginning at 10 p.m., and tickets are $10. 

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