Meredith Ezinma Ramsay, affectionately known as “Classical Bae”, has performed with headliners such as Beyoncé, Yo-Yo Ma, SZA, Kendrick Lamar and Joshua Bell. Now his new foundation, Strings By Heart, aims to bring more diversity, access and inclusion to the world of classical music through music education.
She kicked off the new mission Friday with a tour of Harlem Public Schools.
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Ezinma wrote the score for the 2018 documentary “The Times of Bill Cunningham” about the late New York Times photographer and also worked on the score for the Marvel blockbuster “Black Panther.” However, his rise to the top of the classical music world was not easy.
“I remember the isolation I felt as the only black person in the orchestra, sometimes discouraged by my teachers from pursuing my dreams,” she said. “Yet statistics clearly show that music education plays a vital role in helping children and young adults achieve their goals, improve their self-esteem and more. Children from all backgrounds and communities deserve the chance to experience the joy of classical music and feel they belong in this world, and what better genre than hip-hop to introduce young minds to the vast potential of classical music?”
Black and Latino musicians are historically underrepresented in classical orchestras, making up less than 4% of orchestra members, according to Strad Magazine.
Experts say music education can help develop discipline, leadership, focus, and improved grades in addition to fostering a sense of community — skills that can last a lifetime.
To launch the initiative, Ezinma visited three Harlem elementary and middle schools: PS 197 John B Russwurm, PS 133 Fred R Moore, and Isaac Newton Middle School for Math and Science.
She performed interactive demonstrations to encourage students to apply for Strings By Heart.
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The organization’s goal is to equip, educate, and empower students by providing private and group lessons, access to leading instruments and cultural events, and a hands-on approach. community-oriented.
During the sessions, students will be encouraged to try out instruments, participate in listening activities, and get excited about learning something new while developing a relationship with other students.
Shar Music will be the exclusive supplier of instruments to Strings By Heart.
CLICK HERE for more information on Strings by Heart.
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