'Music for A Change' makes a difference

 Music for a Change, a Mangaluru-based non-government organisation is making a difference in the lives of children, who have no access to formal training in art, by making the facilty tangible.

Formed by like-minded art enthusiasts in 2014, the NGO has been imparting dance training to children in St Agnes Special School and Chethana Special School (Seva Bharati Trust). Also, music training is being imparted at Swaroopa Adhyayana Kendra and Government Higher Primary School, Mannagudda.

Ashish Palanna, Arjun D’Souza, Leona Aranha (administrator) and Disha Prabhu, art enthusiasts who are into various professions, came across an idea to impart free basic training in Western Classical Music and dance to the children in special schools and children studying in government schools.

They started with Roman and Catherine School for Blind in Bejai-Kapikad. The venture was quite successful and was extended to other institutions. 

The NGO organised a fund-raiser event, through which they could gather a significant amount for the purchase of music instruments and towards the remuneration of the music and dance teachers. Several music lovers voluntarily came forward to provide musical instruments necessary for the cause.

Classes are conducted two days in a week and professional teachers Richard and Vikas train the students in music and dance respectively.

Speaking to DH, Arjun D’Souza, one of its founders, said that the aim of initiating dance and music training to the children, through professional teachers is to enable children imbibe the skills, which could help them in a long-run.

Less privileged children or special children should not feel inferior, only because they lack formal training in dance and music. If the children are trained in basics, they will later be able to pursue it and gather expertise. At some point of time in distant future, they might also be able to take it as a profession. “Basically, dance and music make children happier.

It feels good to see the students learning the art forms and looking forward to the classes every week. The students, now are able to understand the nuances of music”, D’Souza added.

St Agnes Special School principal Sr Maria Shruthi said the students at the special school are learning to coordinate, after they are introduced to dance training. Improvement is visible in the rest of their activities, which is surely because of art, she said.

The NGO also plans to host a programme in July to exhibit the dancing and singing talents of the students. Music and dance performances by popular troupes would be an added feature. The organisation could be reached at https://trustmusicforchange.org

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