The Art of Music Foundation celebrated 10 years since inception with performances headlined by Polish music composer, conductor and producer JIMEK (Radzimir Debski) and top Kenyan Orchestras.
The Art of Music Foundation was established in 2009 with a mission to promote the performance and appreciation of art music in Kenya and to use its trans-formative power to change lives, particularly of those living in underprivileged areas of the country. It has two projects through which they enable young people understand more about art music. Started in the year 2009, the Ghetto Classics program is a community program that involves over 300 children in Korogocho – one of Kenya’s largest informal settlements. The National Youth Orchestra of Kenya is a pioneering education and training project which was set up by the Art of Music Foundation in 2010.
The Foundation which was represented by the National Youth Orchestra of Kenya, Ghetto Classics and the Safaricom Youth Orchestra was also joined on stage by renowned Mexican pianist Jorge Viladoms. The celebration started with a Gala dinner on Saturday evening at the Trademark Hotel, followed by an open concert on Sunday afternoon at Amani Gardens in Karura Forest.
JIMEK and Viladoms who have come to Kenya at different times for Safaricom International Jazz Festival have been collaborating with Art of Music Foundation by doing voluntary music classes with the children over the years. JIMEK was one of the headliners for the 2018 edition of Safaricom International Jazz Festival. He has worked on several projects with Ghetto Classics, among them, producing a song for Ghetto Classics member Cyndicate Kabei, titled Asante.
Elizabeth Njoroge, Director, Art of Music Foundation, had this to say, “10 years ago I would never have thought that we would come this far. We have had lots of challenges along the way, however, we have been able to overcome them due to the optimism of the 1,500 children under our guidance and care. We started with nothing more than faith and hope for a brighter future and the support we have received from donors, local and international musicians and the Safaricom International Jazz Festival has been priceless.”