Support the Center for Musical Arts and the Heartstrings Program on Colorado Gives Day
For over 20 years, the Center for Musical Arts’ Heartstrings program has been providing need-based tuition assistance and access to low- or no-cost musical instruments for students who cannot afford to rent them from a music store. Education Director Dr. Kathy Kucsan — she prefers to go by “Kathy” — is a co-founder of the school and has had a front seat from which to witness the power of the Heartstrings program.
One of the key elements of the Heartstrings program, need-based tuition assistance, runs on the honor system — no lengthy application or copies of taxes required, to make sure students feel welcome to apply. Kathy explains that students respect the Center’s approach, and that many of these students return as donors and volunteers down the road. “Currently, around 35-40% of Center students receive some degree of tuition assistance,” she says; in 2019, that equated to ~$65,000 in support to those students.
Kathy says that Heartstrings has continued to grow in new ways — for example, by providing 100% tuition assistance for veterans, as well as for Dreamers through the “I Have a Dream” Foundation, which serves under-resourced communities.
Over the next 20 years, there is no shortage of ideas about how the program might continue to expand to serve its community. Between partnerships with human service organizations and deeper connections with the Colorado Music Festival (the performance arm of the organization), the possibilities are staggering.
The Heartstrings program has already enjoyed countless achievements and success stories in its first 20 years, from the 3rd grader who saved up $3.47 to donate to the program to the young clarinetist who told Kathy, “I get to play music so beautiful that it makes my heart hurt or sing.” In Kathy’s words, “To me, the major accomplishment is one person at a time getting to learn/play/listen to/love music because we gave them a way, and maybe their lives turned out just a little differently because they got to have music.”
This year, more than ever, the Heartstrings program needs support from community members like you. Please remember the Center for Musical Arts on Colorado Gives Day (Dec. 7) and with your year-end giving. Thank you for your continued support!