We are proud to announce this year’s finalists for the 2021 Adolf Busch Award: Beyond the Bars, The David’s Harp Foundation, Music Haven, Music on the Inside and Upbeat NYC. The quality of this year’s applications made our decision the hardest to date. We are truly humbled by the number of organizations devoted to promoting social good through music.
Beyond the Bars was originally an organization focused solely on incarcerated youth. After hearing many testimonials about how music could have been a positive factor for them at an earlier age, the organization expanded to also focus on children who experience violence throughout North and West Philadelphia. The mission of Beyond the Bars is to “interrupt the cycles of violence and incarceration” through music.The
David’s Harp Foundation uses music as a means to increase grades and give purpose to at-risk youth in youth. The organization’s studio hosts children from homeless shelters in after-school programs. The David’s Harp Foundation also works in juvenile detention centers with their mobile studios, as well as remotely to give as many students access to the resources as possible.
Music Haven is the only after-school music program that offers one-on-one private lessons for low-income youth in Connecticut. Parents, families and graduates of the program have attributed the organization with giving students courage, passion, cooperation and social skills. Music Haven gives back their community with free concerts, and participate in events that support immigrant rights and the Black Lives Matter movement.
Music on the Inside uses music education and mentorship to instill confidence and hope for incarcerated individuals and those reentering society. Workshops include learning instruments, singing, songwriting and producing music, which result in concerts to help bridge the gap between prisons and communities. The organization is active in New York State jails and prisons, but hopes to expand after seeing positive results with Zoom.
Upbeat NYC provides free music programming to children in the South Bronx. The organization focuses on creating a space where children of color feel “not only welcome, but comfortable” in orchestras and ensembles with 99% of students coming from Hispanic or African American backgrounds. Upbeat NYC goes beyond providing music; they also deliver 150 free meals each week to students and families who face food insecurity.