A Letter From Our Director For #GivingTuesday

Dear Friends,

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Wow, what a year 2017 has been for Sonic Arts For All. When I founded SAFA! in early 2016, I did so with the intention of answering a simple question: How can we bring the joy of digital music making to aspiring new performers/composers/producers of all ages?  In these uncertain times, particularly in funding for the arts and for music education in NYC and beyond, what can we do as educators, artists, and technologists to provide new creative opportunities for those who want and need it most?  In response, I am proud to say that Sonic Arts For All has continued to provide innovative new programming to a growing number of young music makers.
 

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The Sonic Arts For All mission is simple: to bring accessible music technology education, performance, and production to the K-12 and special needs communities of New York City and beyond. This past year, we’ve been able to partner with several music technology developers and manufacturers, such as Korg, ROLI, Auxy, and Artiphon, as well as join with well-known electronic music venues in Brooklyn, such as The Lot Radio and Halcyon the Shop, to offer a unique music workshop experience to local communities.
 

 

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This growth in available state-of-the-art equipment and in our carefully selected teaching artist staff, has allowed us to expand to five new program sites and workshop residencies in 2017 alone. Even more exciting, this has resulted in over 410 new songs and other recordings from our students, all available for free download on our Soundcloud site. From presenting at the capstone seminar for the Parsons Scholars Pre-College Program in February, to our work with middle and high schoolers with the Brooklyn College Community Partnership at both Midwood HS and IS 297 last Spring, to expanding our teaching practices to students with IEPs and on the autistic spectrum, 2017 has become the year of SAFA!


 

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As this year comes to close, SAFA! continues to expand our reach and positive impact. In November, we had the pleasure of heading up to Kingston, NY where we hosted a hands-on hardware electronics workshop at the Everette Hodge Community Center in the downtown district. And we recently launched our third weekly program site at Kiddie Science in Lefferts Gardens, where we will be piloting a new curriculum includingSTEM-oriented electronic instrument building workshops.


 

None of this would be possible without the remarkable generosity of SAFA’s friends and supporters.  Each tax-deductible contribution – large and small - ensures that we can continue to recruit dedicated teaching artist staff and develop exciting new programs, all while keeping costs low for students and their families. With your help we will also continue to strive towards our second phase of operations – SAFA! on wheels! -  where we plan to convert an RV to a fully mobile recording studio and workspace to take our music-making and educational tours to all five boroughs and beyond.

 

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This holiday season, please consider joining the Sonic Arts For All creative family by making a tax-deductible charitable contribution to SAFA! here. The process is quick and easy, and we really appreciate your generosity.

With best wishes to you and your family.

Max Alper, 
Founder & Director, Sonic Arts For All

Introducing Sonic Arts For All Workshops @ Kiddie Science in Lefferts Gardens!

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Hello Lefferts Gardens!!!  We couldn’t be more excited to announce the launch of our third weekly program site.

Every Monday from 4:30 to 6:30 starting 11/27, we will be hosted by our amazing new partners Kiddie Science at 509 Rogers Ave. Please visit their website at KiddieScience.org to learn about registering for the courses, we can’t wait to hear what these kids have in store!

Introducing our new teaching artist, Dyani Douze!

We couldn't be more thrilled to announce our first of several new additions to the SAFA! family: Dyani Douze! 

Dyani Douze is a Brooklyn-based DJ and multimedia artist working in sound art, music production, film editing, film distribution and curatorial projects. She has presented her work at Red Bull Music Academy Festival, Brooklyn Museum, The Whitney Museum, AFROPUNK AFTER DARK, and ALL GOLD Listening Room at MoMa PS1, among other programs. Dyani will be helping us develop our first batch of Introductory DJ youth workshops, get excited!

A Call to Donors for Expanding Summer Programming at Powrplnt!

Dear Friends,

It has been quite the year so far for Sonic Arts For All! We’ve expanded our teaching residencies to a variety of locations in NYC, including the Brooklyn College Art Lab, the Brooklyn College Center for Computer Music, POWRPLNT, and a variety of public school sites. We currently offer three after-school and weekend programs for the K-12 communities of Greater Flatbush and other neighborhoods through the Brooklyn College Community Partnership. SAFA! is now also a certified vendor for the New York Department of Education and the New York City Housing Authority. Finally, SAFA! was a beneficiary of the Music Of Foundation’s Carnegie Hall Tribute Benefit Series for the second year in a row this past March, allowing us to expand our instrument and equipment inventory and get them into the hands of our students.

We are writing to you with the hope that you will help us to expand our summertime teaching hours at POWRPLNT, a digital art collaboratory providing access to tech resources, skills, and community to the children of Bushwick. We currently host a single two-hour workshop each week, but through your generosity, SAFA! will be able to offer at least two three-hour workshops on a weekly basis.

For this summertime fundraiser, we hope to raise a total of $5,000. This entire sum will be used to fund wages for our sonic arts instructors, and the flexibility granted by these funds would also allow us to more comfortably maintain and expand workshops in other NYC neighborhoods while school is out for the summer. Additional funding will also help us to expand our teaching artist hours at POWRPLNT and continue our outreach campaign throughout Bushwick so that our impact can be that much greater. If you would like to contribute to this summer initiative, please do so on our Giving Page.

Thank you all for your continued support of this ambitious project, and see you in the summer!

With gratitude,

Max Alper

Founder & Executive Director

Sonic Arts For All

Introducing the third member of our Board of Directors, Douglas Geers!

We are pleased to introduce our third Board of Directors member, a mentor to many and electronic music pedagogue extraordinaire, Dr. Douglas Geers! Douglas is a composer, educator, and Director of SAFA! partner org the Brooklyn College Center for Computer Music. As of Fall 2016, Dr. Geers is the founder and department head of the Sonic Arts and Media Scoring MFA programs at Brooklyn College. We couldn't be happier to welcome the Professor as we continue to grow not only our outreach but our pedagogy as well!

Introducing our 2nd Board Member, Angelina Dreem!

We are thrilled to introduce the second member of our Board of Directors, Angelina Dreem!

Angelina Dreem is a multi-disciplinary artist, entrepreneur and activist residing in New York City. She is the founder of SAFA! partner organization, POWRPLNT, a digital arts nonprofit and gallery in Bushwick, Brooklyn. She is a 2017 cohort of NEW INC, the New Museum led arts and tech incubator. She works primarily in sound and has performed at Clearing Gallery, Pioneer Works, the Knockdown Center, and for NADA at Art Basel Miami. She has spoken on panels at MoMA PS1, Livestream HQ, and at September Gallery. We couldn't be happier to welcome her aboard!

Introducing our first board member, Hisham Akira Bharoocha!

We couldn't be more excited to announce our first of many amazing board members, Hisham Akira Bharoocha! Hisham is a musician, artist, creative director, and teacher who has done everything from play with Lightning Bolt, design clothes with Solange Knowles, and organize and conduct massive drum ensemble performances with the Boredoms. He currently plays in NYC trio and SAFA! collaborators Kill Alters as well as his solo project Soft Circle. We're honored Hisham has offered his expertise to help SAFA! grow and expand our programs and network of partners! 

Stream and download the SAFA! Student Recital Live on The Lot ft. Kill Alters

We had SUCH a blast on the air at the legendary LOT RADIO station in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Our students had a unique take on the typical "student recital": for the first hour, each student performed a prepared solo composition using the technology of their choice. The second hour consisted of a live improvised jam session between the SAFA! students and members of local noise legends KILL ALTERS (Hisham Akira Bharoocha, Bonnie Baxter, Nicos Kennedy). Enjoy the full set below in video and audio streaming formats!