Music Advancement for Newark-Area Youth (MANY) to increase instrumental students’ access to quality instruction

Partnership to broaden pathways to local performance-based education programs

Joint auditions to take place November 20 and 22

NEWARK, NJ (October 28, 2014)—The New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) and New Jersey Symphony Orchestra (NJSO) today announced a new partnership—Music Advancement for Newark-Area Youth (MANY)—that will increase Newark-area students’ access to high-quality instrumental music instruction.

Through MANY, NJPAC and the NJSO will offer programs for Greater Newark-area students in fifth through 10th grade. Participants can study string, woodwind, brass and percussion instruments with the goal of developing musical and instrumental proficiency while building leadership skills.

MANY will also groom participating instrumentalists for acceptance into performance-based educational programs within the Greater Newark community, including the Arts High School Orchestra and Concert Band, Newark School of the Arts, NJPAC Brick City Jazz Orchestra, Wells Fargo Jazz for Teens and NJSO Youth Orchestras.

NJPAC and the NJSO will hold joint auditions that will place students into one of two programs—the NJPAC Symphonic Band Program, which will provide a musical foundation to introductory woodwind, brass and percussion students in grades five through eight, and the NJSO Youth Orchestras Training Ensemble, which will provide intensive musical instruction and leadership development to beginner and intermediate students of string, woodwind, brass and percussion instruments in grades five through 10. Participants in both programs will receive assistance in procuring an instrument.

“We are thrilled to join forces with NJPAC to increase Newark-area youth’s access to the quality arts opportunities they deserve. This work is at the heart of the values NJPAC and the Orchestra share,” says NJSO Vice President of Education & Community Engagement Marshell Jones Kumahor. “We see this partnership primarily as a catalyst for further collaborations with area schools and arts organizations committed to nurturing our young people. We are excited about the possibilities that MANY can spark.”

“Our partnership on MANY with the NJSO will indeed provide more children the opportunity to explore their musical passions,” says Alison Scott-Williams, Acting Head and Assistant Vice President of the Arts Education Department at NJPAC. “Musical and instrumental education programs like this are vital in the development of young talent. Students will use their instrument to collaborate with their peers and improve their skills as an ensemble. This new program provides music instruction for Newark-area youth who are without a band or other music training at their schools.”

MANY bridges two programs:

NJPAC Symphonic Band Program

  • Grades 5–8
  • Designed for students with little or no prior instrumental experience, the program will provide a musical foundation in woodwind, brass and percussion instruments.

NJSO Youth Orchestras Training Ensemble

  • Grades 5–10
  • The program provides intensive musical instruction and leadership development to beginner and intermediate students of string, woodwind, brass and percussion instruments.

Placement auditions

Placement auditions will take place on Thursday, November 20, at the NJPAC Center for Arts Education and Saturday, November 22, at Rutgers Newark’s Bradley Hall. The NJPAC Symphonic Band Program and NJSO Youth Orchestras Training Ensemble are open to students in the Greater Newark area—including Newark, Irvington, Bayonne, Belleville, Bloomfield, East Orange, Elizabeth, Harrison, Hillside, Jersey City, Kearny, Maplewood, Orange and South Orange. For additional information and to apply, contact or 973.353.7058.

More information on NJPAC and the NJSO’s full suites of education programs is available at and, respectively.

About the New Jersey Performing Arts Center

The New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), located in downtown Newark, New Jersey, is among the largest performing arts centers in the United States and is the artistic, cultural, educational and civic center of New Jersey—where great performances and events enhance and transform lives every day. NJPAC brings diverse communities together, providing access to all and showcasing the state’s and the world’s best artists while acting as a leading catalyst in the revitalization of its home city. Through its extensive Arts Education programs, NJPAC is shaping the next generation of artists and arts enthusiasts. NJPAC has attracted nearly 8 million visitors (including more than 1 million children) since opening its doors in 1997, and it nurtures meaningful and lasting relationships with each of its constituents.

For more information about NJPAC, visit or call 1.888.GO.NJPAC (466.5722).

About the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra

Named “a vital, artistically significant musical organization” by The Wall Street Journal, the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra embodies that vitality through its statewide presence and critically acclaimed performances, education partnerships and unparalleled access to music and the Orchestra’s superb musicians.

Under the bold leadership of Music Director Jacques Lacombe, the NJSO presents classical, pops and family programs, as well as outdoor summer concerts and special events. Embracing its legacy as a statewide orchestra, the NJSO is the resident orchestra of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark and regularly performs at the State Theatre in New Brunswick, Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, Richardson Auditorium in Princeton, Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown and bergenPAC in Englewood. Partnerships with New Jersey arts organizations, universities and civic organizations remain a key element of the Orchestra’s statewide identity.

In addition to its lauded artistic programming, the NJSO presents a suite of education and community engagement programs that promote meaningful, lifelong engagement with live music. Programs include the three-ensemble NJSO Youth Orchestras, school-time Concerts for Young People performances and multiple offerings—including the El Sistema-inspired NJSO CHAMPS (Character, Achievement and Music Project)—that provide and promote in-school instrumental instruction as part of the NJSO Academy. The NJSO’s REACH (Resources for Education and Community Harmony) chamber music program annually brings original programs—designed and performed by NJSO musicians—to a variety of settings, reaching as many as 17,000 people in nearly all of New Jersey’s 21 counties.

For more information about the NJSO, visit or email Tickets are available for purchase by phone 1.800.ALLEGRO (255.3476) or on the Orchestra’s website.

The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra’s programs are made possible in part by The New Jersey State Council on the Arts, along with many other foundations, corporations and individual donors. United is the official airline of the NJSO.