The Pierians Foundation, Incorporated

Transforming Generations Through The Arts

 
PIERIAN CHAPTER INITIATIVE MATCHING GRANTS
 
Matching grants for chapter programs and projects are awarded to chapters that request money for a community artistic initiative.  Grants are provided as a 1:1 matched dollar amount by the Pierians Foundation. Annually, we match up to $3,000 in total. Grants are available at one of the following levels: $500.00, $750.00 or $1,000.00.   Matching Grants are made for initiatives that have the greatest impact on the artistic growth of  a community.  Awards are made in cash or a combination of cash and in-kind contributions.




OVERVIEW

The primary purpose of the Henderson Hopkins project, is to introduce young people to the art of collage and enable their use of collage to express their thoughts and feelings and communicate those with one another and the wider community.  The Baltimore City Chapter of the Pierians, Incorporated, was awarded a matching grant in 2018 and the Community Outreach Committee facilitates the project by partnering with the Reginald Lewis Museum and the Johns Hopkins School of Education. 



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Art teachers advance the students collage work by first introducing them and educating them on the work and life of Romare Bearden. Through the efforts of the engagement, children to see Bearden’s work and are introduced to activities and exercises to learn, recognize and understand Bearden’s work and appreciate Bearden’s impact on Baltimore city. The goal is for children to learn to use and appreciate the power of collage as an art form and a therapeutic activity.

Since 2016, children in 1st through 8th grade at the Henderson Hopkins School, a predominately African American Baltimore City public school, are the primary beneficiaries of the funding and oversight by Johns Hopkins University. The project is one of twelve after school projects that the students of Henderson school can participate in 4 days a week and continues to gain momentum and serves approximately 30 children annually, from September to June. Now, in its third year, members of the Baltimore Chapter of the Pierians, Incorporated, participate in school PTA meetings helping to introduce parents to art, further promote it in their children’s lives and promote the continuation for them to reap benefits for the school, students, and student families.

Last year, Ms. Deidre Harris of New York’s Bearden Foundation, conducted a workshop with parents on the “power of collage”. Camay Murphy, creator of the project and chair of the committee, believes that this project is having lasting results on the children and their families. Camay stated, “One little girl did a collage that featured an animal huddled in the background of lots of other people and objects says Ms. Murphy. When asked to explain her collage the young girl said that she herself often feels like that animal—afraid to come out in all of the noise and danger of her neighborhood. I took that opportunity as an opening to connect with her telling her that even the most frightened animal must come out—when it's safe to eat and play with others”.

ACCOMPLISHMENTS: The project has been successful in several areas. Specifically, the project has accomplished the following: Introduced children to college and art Assisted in using collage to express cognitions and feelings Children learned the history of Baltimore city and the life history of one of its most prolific artists Engaged children 4 days a week in an after-school program providing a positive outlet and positive role modeling.

FUTURE GOAL: The Baltimore City Chapter plans to continue work with the school and potentially introduce the project to the school district administration for use in other schools.


OVERVIEW

The Urban Youth Harp Ensemble (UYHE) was founded in 2000 by Elisabeth Remy Johnson, harpist of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and Roselyn Lewis, a longtime Atlanta public schools music teacher known for exposing students to opera and African drums. Established as a nonprofit organization, separate from the Atlanta school district, the ensemble’s goal was to give children the opportunity to play the harp.  

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The program started with just two students at Brown Middle School. Ms. Remy Johnson taught the students on her small troubadour harp which was left at the school for the students to practice on each day. By 2004, 28 students in middle and high school were enrolled playing harps provided by the generous donations of supporters. In 2009, Carolyn Lund Munford assumed the role of Artistic Director in 2009. In addition to donations from private foundations and individuals, the ensemble receives financial support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Fulton County Arts Council and the City of Atlanta Office of Cultural Affairs.

The Atlanta Chapter of the Pierians Incorporated and all members of the Pierians Foundation provided a grant of $2,000 to the Urban Youth Harp Ensemble, a nonprofit organization that provides free harp instruction to over 100 students in Atlanta’s inner-city.

ACCOMPLISHMENTS:

Currently the program thrives under the leadership of Ms. Lewis, now retired from Atlanta Public Schools, and Artistic Director Carolyn Lund Munford, an accomplished musician and gifted teacher. The program’s primary home is at Drew Charter School, where more than 80 students ranging in age from 9 to 18 are enrolled. The students are taught by Angelica Hairston, native of Atlanta, Georgia, who holds a Master of Music Industry Leadership from Northeastern University and studied with the world renowned harpist Judy Loman at The Glenn Gould School of The Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, Ontario; and Molly O’Roark, a native of Memphis, TN, who has won various awards and competitions including: 2014 National Anne Adams Award, 2014 Artist Presentation Society Auditions, Eastman School of Music concerto competition, Wayne Barlow Award for excellence in Harp Performance and holds a Master’s of Music in Harp Performance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Through the current efforts and financial support from the Atlanta Chapter of the Pierians, Incorporated, the Urban Youth Harp Ensemble announced its expansion to the Main Street Charter Academy after-school program. Lessons for four young ladies in 2nd, 4th, 5th and 7th grades, began on January 28, 2019, in the after-school program. Monica Hargrave, professional harpist, teaches lessons for an hour every Monday that school is in session. Julia Blackwell, Agnes Scott College student and graduate of the Urban Youth Harp Ensemble is the practice intern. She reviews what the teacher has done and supervises the practice of the young ladies every Friday for an hour. The students performed one selection on the Urban Youth Harp Ensemble Spring Concert on April 16, 2019.

GOAL:

The Atlanta chapter has a commitment to furthering the arts in the community. In the future, the chapter’s intention is to support the ensemble’s goal of giving children the opportunity to play the harp and further expose them to the fine arts.

Overview
Project “Water Us”, an artistic expression program, was implemented by the Flint Chapter in May of 2017. The goal of the project was to introduce and teach the Art of Social Change/Commentary (also known as the Art of Self Determination) toBoys and Girls Club members (children aged 10-12) of Greater Flint. Through Project “Water Us”, students were exposed to four periods in history: Enslavement Era to Reconstruction, Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights Era, and Hip Hop. 
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The program curriculum presented how genres of literature, music, visual art and dance/drama, were utilized as art forms of resistance. The goal was to accomplish the integration of social justice and drama and to show the students through self-determination art,the historical evolution of social injustice and to teach the children copingmechanisms. The program curriculum was created by Flint Chapter literary artist/educator, Semaj Brown, and augmented by professional art educators: Edith Withey, Visual Arts; Diane Kirksey, Music; Janet Poole-Little, Drama; with invaluable insights, from Corinne Edwards, Ed.D.

Overview
The Finest! Performance Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non- profit, focuses on personal character and talent development of youth by providing education and artistic development, theater skills, mental development, critical thinking skills, social development and intrapersonal skills. Sponsored by the Montgomery County Chapter, The Finest! Performance Foundation, with the ANKH Repertory Theatre and the City of Gaithersburg, presented mixed-media African American themed theatrical/musical shows.
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During the periods of the Foundation’s grant, the group created and performed four theatrical productions: “Black Nativity” by Langston Hughes, “A Change Gon’ Come” by Kashi-Tara, and the Broadway hit musicals, “Dream Girls, and ” the “Wiz”.

Overview
In 2016 and 2018, grants were awarded to the Edwina Hunter Studio, sponsored by the Columbia, Maryland Chapter for the Piano Olympics project. This project’s goal is to raise the level and skill for each student pianist, while providing a community audience for the artists to perform and providing musical performance for the community. 
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The initiative serves several purposes: (1) to teach, train and develop the musical talents of children; (2) to expose and develop the musical skills, presence and performance of participants; (3) to contribute to and enhance the community artistic endeavors and experiences with the arts; and (4) to introduce and expose students to an enhanced level of learning by working and performing with Mr. Alexander Peskanov, concert pianist, composer, and master teacher.