We’re all familiar with remote work and entertainment now, and entertainment venues are no different. Just this spring, Carnegie Hall launched a new program that allows families to safely engage with music at home. The new video series, Sing with Carnegie Hall, features weekly interactive sing-alongs covering a range of topics including rhythm, play, feelings and imagination to encourage connection, well-being and creativity for families with young children, particularly ages 2-5.
Each video is hosted by Carnegie Hall teaching artist Emily Eagen and features special guests, including Grammy-nominated singers Falu Shah and Sonia De Los Santos who lead families in songs from around the world.
Robert F. Smith is an avid supporter of the arts as one of his main philanthropic endeavors. He has long supported organizations that expand access to music and culture, particularly for young people of color. Smith joined the Carnegie Hall board in 2013 and donated to expand LinkUp, which creates free music education curricula for elementary students and aims to reach five million students over the next ten years. In 2016, Smith was named Chairman of Carnegie Hall’s Board of Trustees, becoming the first African American to hold the post.
Beyond Carnegie, Smith has also financially supported the Open Space Institute, which promotes outdoors arts spaces, as well as parks and green spaces. His $1 million donation to the organization helped upgrade and revitalize its Cultural Performance Center at the Denny Farrell Riverbank State Park in Harlem, New York. The revamp helped update lighting and sound equipment, as well as the stage, seating and flooring.
It’s long been documented that music education benefits children who are still in the process of developing. One study from Frontiers in Psychology showed a positive correlation between consistent music education and children having a larger vocabulary along with enhanced reading comprehension. Another study in Neuropsychologia showed that musicians outperformed non-musicians in auditory, visual, and memory tests. This could be due to music forcing children to hone their memorization skill to sight read, remember the proper notes on their instrument, or recall lyrics to a song.
You can visit Carnegie Hall’s website to learn more about upcoming music education programs for children and adults. Expanding access to music education will help set them up for successful growth and development.