Exactly one year ago this month, a group of five music-minded people formed a non-profit community organization with the goal to provide and promote music education, enjoyment and enrichment to people of all ages.
Since then Stagelights Musical Arts Community has:
•Created a free or low-cost music lesson program for local youth.
•Conducted a summer youth music academy.
•Provided numerous opportunities for aspiring and established musicians to perform publically.
•Brought quality touring acts to Curry County on a near-weekly basis.
Our summertime efforts concluded triumphantly with the well-attended, three-hour “Community Music Showcase” on a Sunday afternoon at Brookings’ Azalea Park.
None of these accomplishments would have happened without the help of a handful of volunteers, local musicians and, most important, the financial support of local businesses and individuals.
The Stagelights board of directors offers a heartfelt thanks to each and every one of you.
But we’re just getting started!
Open house today
To celebrate our one-year anniversary, we are holding an open house at 7 p.m. today (Oct. 13) at the Central Building, 703 Chetco Ave., Brookings.
We invite everyone in the community, including our current supporters and potential benefactors, to come and learn more about Stagelights. The open house will include presentations and discussion about the challenges and successes of the previous year and about how the organization should move forward to best serve the community.
We would particularily like to have all local musicians, including young musicians, attend the open house and make Stagelights “their place” and help us create a true communal center for established and aspiring musicians.
A new home needed
Our blossoming music lesson program has outgrown its current location and we are looking for a new place for our students and teachers to practice.
It shouldn’t be difficult. With so many empty storefronts, commercial retail buildings and homes in Brookings-Harbor, we hope that a benefactor will step forward and offer — for free or reduced rent — adequate space for our lesson program.
If need be, the program can be set up so that we can vacate the premises with a few days’ notice, should the owner find a new tenant. Also, because Stagelights is a non-profit, any donation or reduced rent can be a tax write-off.
If someone donates the use of the facilities, we would be more than happy to prominently display the owner’s name or that of the business in Stagelights marketing and promotional materials.
Ultimately, Stagelights would like to find a permanent home where we can conduct board meetings, lesson programs and workshops, store music equipment and use as a venue for music concerts.
Music instruments needed
Many of our students receive scholarships to cover the cost of lessons, but are in need of instruments. We encourage everyone to check their garages, closets and storage units for unwanted but usable music instruments and donate them to Stagelights.
First and foremost, we need a grant writer to seek out and obtain much-needed funding, and someone to take over the scheduling and operation of our music lesson program. Stagelights board members have been working diligently to cover these assignments, but have realized that we can’t do it alone.
We also need several people to learn how to operate our PA system and operate it at various events.
Other volunteer opportunities include greeting people at music events, distributing flyers, helping at fundraisers, and teaching music.
Despite the bad economy, Stagelights and its supporters have accomplished much in the first year, but there is plenty more to do and we need the community’s help.
Please come to our open house today or visit our website (www.stagelights.us) to learn more about this wonderful opportunity for local musicians, music lovers, students, parents and education advocates to help guide and mold this organization.
You may also contact Stagelights by calling 541-251-3952.
The Stagelights Board of Directors is Kim Banfield, chairwoman; James Anderson, vice chairman; Perry Devine, secretary; Michele Later, treasurer; and Scott Graves, co-treasurer/publicity.