Violins and Trumpets and Trombones, Oh My!

Even in the upper grades, more than 50% of Albany student musicians use an instrument borrowed from school to play and practice on. That makes having a robust supply of high-quality instruments essential to the success of our school music programs.

Since 2014, the Albany Fund for Education has collected valuable musical instruments from attics, basements, and closets throughout the Capital Region. These instruments get a second life in the hands of music students in the Albany City School District, providing them the joy and benefits that come with playing a musical instrument. Not all of the instruments received are in perfect shape, and that’s where John Keal Music comes in, assessing donated instruments and providing a generous discount on repairs.

In 2021 AFE’s musical instrument donation program received 136 instruments, including violins, violas, cellos, trombones, trumpets, saxophones, french horns, clarinets, flutes, guitars, drums, oboes and a glockenspiel. 123 of these were able to be repaired and placed in the hands of student musicians!

Music is a gift that enriches life. Playing an instrument builds skill, develops discipline, and creates a sense of accomplishment. These donated and restored instruments bring benefits to students who might not otherwise have the opportunity to play.

This program is made by possible by amazing support from the John Keal Music Company, Stewarts Shops, the Albany Friends of Music, the Albany Symphony Vanguard, and generous individual donors. A special thanks this year goes out to Peter Torres, of Clifton Park, who organized an instrument donation drive as his Eagle Scout project.