Music Makers Program
In 2013, in an effort to keep music education strong in our community,
the Southwest Michigan Symphony Orchestra started Music Makers classes for students.
The program’s approach to music education emphasizes intensive ensemble participation, group learning and peer teaching. It also seeks a commitment to keeping the joy and fun of musical learning and music making ever-present.
The program began with classes at the Boys and Girls Club of Benton Harbor, which later included students from the neighboring Martin Luther King Elementary School. In the fall of 2018, the SMSO expanded its Music Makers programming to include instruction at the Benton Harbor Charter School Academy in Benton Harbor.
The program’s purpose is ultimately to create a daily haven of safety, joy and fun that builds every child’s self-esteem and sense of value. This intensive approach has allowed students to make substantial progress both as musicians and in life skills such as increased confidence and the ability to focus and collaborate as a group. The purpose of the program is entirely compatible with the vision of The Boys & Girls Club.
The program’s purpose is to not only demonstrate basic instrument fundamentals, but to create a daily haven of safety, joy and fun that builds every child’s self-esteem and sense of value. This intensive approach has allowed students to make substantial progress both as musicians and in life skills such as increased confidence and the ability to focus and collaborate as a group. The purpose of the program is entirely compatible with the vision of The Boys & Girls Club and The Benton Harbor Charter School Academy.
We believe that granting youngsters access to quality music education in a safe, nurturing environment is, in many ways, the ultimate example of “giving a hand up.” This is for two reasons: first, because it requires such a high degree of commitment from its participants and second, because the required skills of collaboration and focus (constantly modeled by the teachers) are applicable in every area of a child’s life.
We can imagine few more wholly positive ventures than helping kids thrive through music.
Jordan Hamilton plays the cello for the Southwest Michigan Symphony Orchestra. Currently, he is studying cello with Bruce Uchimura at Western Michigan University after receiving his Bachelor of Arts from Baldwin Wallace University.
Jordan is the lead instructor for the Music Makers team and is passionate about the outreach of orchestras in the community. Jordan's focus is to help the kids learn about music and engage in a community where they listen, support and learn from each other. This will enable them to eventually make great music together.
During his free time, Jordan enjoys watching the New York Giants, reading about various subjects, spending time with friends and practicing/listening to music. Since music has made such a valuable and positive impact on his life, Jordan is very passionate about sharing the gift of music with this community.
Families have an amazing opportunity to give another child the joy of music and themselves a tax deduction.
We are accepting new and used musical instruments of any kind.
Anyone interested in donating a new or used instrument please contact us to make rrangements.