This is the Allentown School District City Orchestra and the reason I'm posting it here is not necessarily because they're the greatest musicians in the world (sorry, kids, but we all know that the greatest musician in the world is my dog --hidden secondary gem!). The reason I want to share this video is just because I think there are few things in the world cuter than kids playing classical music. And Allentown is sort of a rough place so the fact that these kids make space in their lives for violins and cellos and so on is wonderful to me. It makes me smile every time I see them trucking downtown with their unwieldy instrument cases. It makes me optimistic even, for the future.
Yet you will not be surprised to learn that this program is fighting for its life as the school district suffers through another round o' budget cuts.
I don't want to go on a diatribe (who am I kidding? Of course I do...) but we *need* arts in schools. We need music in schools. We need to tell kids that this stuff is important, that there is more to life than the ugliness we often see around. We need to let them know that we care enough about their future that we don't mind investing in them, even if we're going broke and even if they aren't the greatest musicians in the world (sorry, kids). This orchestra makes me smile more than any professional orchestra (with the possible exception of the London Punkharmonic Orchestra -- 3rd bonus gem!)
Rock on, Allentown.