A salute to taxpayers who support the arts

Want to know what gratitude sounds like?

Listen to the proud cacophony of nearly 900 string instruments swelling through a Performing Arts Center.

Hear the capacity applause.

Want to know what it feels like?

Run your fingers over hand-built and wheel-thrown pottery, touch a lead-dusted sketch pad, lift a piece of fabricated metal.

Want to know what it looks like?

See the precision stitching on theatre costumes, watch the set pieces move, enjoy the proud faces of students as they take their bows.

Last night, as I sat at the All City Strings Festival, I thought for the 900th time about how grateful I am to live in a community that supports the arts.

It isn’t, of course, just the quality of the music, although, I must say, the Variations of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star never sounded better.

It isn’t even the quantity, though, again, the collective force of that many orchestra students, from tiny violinists through senior virtuosos paints an impressive portrait of promise.

It’s the opportunity.

Thanks to available funds, any student can learn to play an instrument, throw a pot, project a voice, write a poem, sing a song, choreograph a dance.

We’re sending students out into the world who have learned to create, how thrilling is that?

Even better, thanks to programs funded by your tax dollar, they’ve developed the confidence to try.

Just think of those possibilities.

So, on this National Income Tax Day, when we’re all a little frustrated about the money going out of our accounts, I want to say thank you to the property tax payers in my school district.

Just look how your investment has grown!

Cello walking home from school
I met these two beautiful students walking home from school yesterday and they graciously let me take their picture. I love the cello slung over his shoulder and the skateboard held under hers.


Random family photos 2008 (including first day of school) 002
Both of my boys played the baritone for at least part of their public school years.
Molly plays the cello, an instrument right about the same size as her grandmother.
Molly's Cello
The cello is a soulful instrument and I’m grateful every time I hear Molly play it.
I took this picture of these lovely girls right before their first high school orchestra concert.
Molly at Holiday Classics
Lucky Molly gets to sing in the choir as well.
north choir ting sing
Look out world, many of the kids in this choir picture are graduating from college this year. The Appleton Area music program taught them to read music, celebrate friendship, appreciate talent, take a risk, wear a tuxedo, find harmony, sing for joy and enjoy the sweet taste of Ting.
All city high school
This is the high school choir at last night’s festival.
All City String Festival
For the finale, 885 musicians crammed the stage and filled the aisles, an inspiring sight. Thank you, American tax payers, for your support of programs like this (and thank you to private businesses like Heid Music, for the extra support needed as well.)



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