Musical Moments Expands to over 30 Pittsburgh-area Schools

by Rhian Kenny

Any parent probably remembers the new food rule: it takes seven introductions before a child will accept a new food. And anyone who has coached soccer knows that the number of touches on the ball is super important. 

The PSO Musicians Care Fund began in 2013 with the mission to bring great music to every child in the region, and has so far given grants totaling more than $50,000 to underfunded school music programs to buy or repair instruments, or to bus thousands of students to PSO School Time concerts at Heinz Hall. All of which is helpful, we believe, and necessary. One concert a year, though, doesn’t add up to many touches. 

Last January we learned about a program called A Mindful Music Moment produced by Thewell.world in Ohio that provides a short daily audio program of classical music excerpts with voice cues telling the students about the music and encouraging calm reflection. Reactions from Ohio schools where the program was first used were highly positive. The benefits of beginning each day with a moment of calm and peace are enough reason to support the program; providing students with 180 touches of classical music every year make our support of it essential. 

Wilkinsburg Schools listening and responding to the Musical Moments program

We were so impressed with the program that we immediately signed on to sponsor 5 schools. When we realized how popular (and now, needed, post-pandemic), we revised our goals and as of this writing we have over 30 schools from k-12 participating, including Pittsburgh Public, New Kensington, Sto-Rox, and Wilkinsburg. We are thrilled to be able to contribute to the musical/cultural fabric of the lives of so many young people. 

For more information, check out the Mindful Music website, this wonderful news coverage from Cincinnati, or experience a sample “moment” here:  https://www.thewell.world/files/resources/day1coplandfanfare2.mp3. Please email rhiankenny@gmail.com if you’d like to bring your school on board or have any other questions! 

To support our goal of providing access to every school in Southwest Pennsylvania, please consider a contribution to the PSO Musicians Care Fund by clicking https://pittsburghfoundation.org/pso.