Hawaii Youth Orchestra to receive $50,000 grant from National Endowment for the Arts: Maui Now


Hawaii Youth Symphony Spring Concert. Computer: HYS

The Hawaii Youth Orchestra has been awarded a $50,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the organization announced in a public statement on Wednesday. The grant will support the Hawaii Youth Symphony’s annual Pacific Conservatory summer programming, strategic planning initiatives for board members, faculty and staff, and Neighbor Island Tours for young musicians.

The “Art Project Grant” was approved by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) as one of 1,135 art project grants with a total value of US$37 million and will be distributed nationwide in the second round in fiscal year 2024.

“Programs like the Hawaii Youth Symphony’s Pacific Conservatory and Neighbor Island Concert Tour exemplify the creativity and care of communities through the arts to tell stories, build connections, and respond to community challenges and opportunities,” said NEA President Maria Rosario Dr. Jackson: “Many aspects of our communities, such as cultural vitality, health and well-being, infrastructure, and the economy, are promoted and improved through investment in arts and design, and the National Endowment for the Arts is committed to ensuring that benefits are felt across the country. “

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The Hawaii Youth Symphony (HYS) is one of the largest youth orchestras in the nation, serving approximately 700 students annually in more than 100 schools across the state. The nonprofit also hosts off-campus music programs and provides Neighbor Island students with more than $35,000 in registration fees, instrument rentals, private lessons and air and ground travel annually through its financial aid program.

“We are extremely honored to receive this grant from the National Endowment for the Arts in the company of such distinguished recipients and to have the opportunity to advance our efforts to provide high-quality music education to young people, regardless of financial circumstances,” Randy Wong, President and CEO of HYS. “At the Hawaii Youth Orchestra, we envision a Hawaii where music is a right, and NEA’s support will further our mission to foster creative and enriching musical experiences for all students.”

This grant award also coincides with the Pacific Conservatory’s 2024 call for applicants. For more than 30 years, HYS has crafted intensive programs where young people in Hawaii and beyond can come together to make music and make new friends while sharpening their skills with renowned faculty from some of the finest music institutions. Comprehensive music programs and collaboration opportunities include string lessons, wind, brass and percussion classes, jazz intensives, ukulele workshops and more. Registration for the 2024 Pacific Conservatory of Music will be held in July this year, and the deadline for registration is May 31, 2024.

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To learn more about HYS’ dynamic programs, partnerships, concerts and community outreach, visit www.HiYouthSymphony.org.

Other NEA Grantees in Hawaii

Seven organizations in Hawaii received a cumulative $1,110,500 in grants from the NEA in the second round of fiscal year 2024, according to a list of grantees announced this week. Organizations receiving grants in Hawaii are as follows:

  • East hawaii cultural committee
    • $25,000 Hilo, Hawaii
      • Arts Project Grants – Local Arts Organizations
      • Purpose: Support a series of exhibitions celebrating contemporary Aboriginal people and Aboriginal work
      • Native Hawaiian artist and cultural practitioner.
  • Vibrant Hawaii
    • $50,000 Hilo, Hawaii
      • Our town – design
      • Purpose: To support Hawaii Island’s artist scholarship program.
  • hawaii International Film Festival (also known as HIFF)
    • $30,000 Honolulu, Hawaii
      • Arts Project Grant – Media Arts
      • Purpose: To support the Hawaii International Film Festival and related public programming.
  • Hawaiian Opera House (also known as HOT)
    • $18,000 Honolulu, Hawaii
      • Arts Project Grant – Opera
      • Purpose: To support the new production of Stuck Elevator, a comedy-rap scrap metal opera from composer Byron Au Yong and screenwriter Aaron Jafferis.
  • hawaii National Endowment for Culture and the Arts
    • $912,500 Honolulu, Hawaii
      • Partnerships (States and Territories)—States and Territories
      • Purpose: To support arts programs, services, and activities related to the execution of the agency’s National Endowment for the Arts-approved strategic plans.
  • hawaii youth symphony association
    • $50,000 Honolulu, Hawaii
      • Arts Project Grant – Music
      • Purpose: Support the Pacific Conservatory of Music; island performance tours for young people and strategic planning for the Board of Trustees, faculty and staff.
  • Young Of Heart Workshop (aka Refugee Society)
    • $25,000 Honolulu, Hawaii
      • Art Project Grant – Folk and Traditional Arts
      • Purpose: To support the Pu’uhonua Association’s community weaving program.



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