‘Bringing Music to Life’ instrument drive seeks gently used instrument donations

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - Have an old flute or French horn you used to play in high school band? A local organization wants you to donate those instruments.

The 10th Bringing Music to Life instrument drive started at the beginning of March and runs until the 15th. Organizers said 15,000 children across the state have benefited from the past nine drives.

“Study after study shows the positive impact that learning music has on children,” said Steve Blatt, Bringing Music to Life executive director. “Their listening skills improve, as well as creative thinking, self-discipline and self-esteem. Students learn the value of persevering and how to work with others toward a common goal. We’re excited about reaching even more children, schools, and communities this year.”

Blatt said 13 schools in Colorado Springs have been awarded instruments, including Fox Meadow Middle School, Galileo School of Math & Science, Griffith Children’s Center, Harrison High School, Horizon Middle School, Jack Swigert Middle School, Jackson Elementary School, Mann Middle School, Mountain Vista Community School, Panorama Middle School, Pikes Peak Elementary, Sabin Middle School and Sierra High School.

Teachers and principals can apply to get instruments for their schools until March 31.

Last year, the donation drive was disrupted by the Bomb Cyclone. This year, Blatt said donations are trickling in. He said they've only collected about half of the donations that they did this time last year.

"The second (last) week of the drive usually picks up, so I have my fingers crossed," Blatt wrote in an email.

Since the program started, Blatt said more than 5,000 instruments have been given to schools.

People can drop off their gently-used band or orchestra instruments at any of 17 donation locations across the state. Drop-off sites in southern Colorado include Meeker Music at 624 N. Tejon St. in Colorado Springs and Pueblo City Schools’ Administration Building at 315 W. 11th Street in Pueblo.

If people don’t have instruments, they can donate money to the repair fund.

“Instrument repairs are the single greatest expense of the program, with the average repair costing us about $155,” Blatt said.

Technicians at the Colorado Institute of Musical Instrument Technology and Boomer Music Company are repairing the donated instruments at a discounted cost.

All instruments are needed, but the drive will not accept upright and grand pianos.