Thursday, 30 January 2020 13:25

Be Instrumental: Skidmore College Hosts Musical Instrument Drive to Benefit Elementary School Students

Photo provided. Photo provided.

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Skidmore College will host Be Instrumental — a musical instrument drive to benefit elementary school students in the North Country, including Ticonderoga Elementary School band program students. The drive will accept gently used brass, woodwind and percussion band instruments.  The drive began Wednesday, Jan. 22 and concludes Saturday, Feb. 8.

In tandem, Skidmore students hosted “Band-Aid” — a benefit concert on Jan. 25 at Lively Lucy’s in Falstaff’s Pavilion on the Skidmore College Campus. The event price of admission was an instrument or a monetary donation of any amount. All proceeds went toward the Be Instrumental drive.

When Evan Mack’s 10-year-old son came home from band practice and told him that some of his classmates were playing plastic instruments or instruments held together by tape, the senior teaching professor of music at Skidmore College was stunned. He also learned that many students could not afford to rent musical instruments.

Mack, an accomplished composer and pianist, teamed up with Michelle Hubbs, director of the Office of Community Service, as well as Skidmore students Madison Pappas ’22 and Neil Mellstrom ’20 to create Be Instrumental — an instrument drive aimed at giving the gift of music to children in Ticonderoga Schools. 

“Learning to play on a quality, working instrument is so important. When you give children a functional instrument, what you’re really giving them is the opportunity to explore what they’re capable of and to fall in love with music,” says Mack.

Skidmore students have been asked to bring gently used instruments that they no longer use back to campus when they return from winter break for the drive. “So many of our students have played an instrument at one point, in high school or even college, but no longer use that instrument,” says Mack. “These same instruments can now inspire a new generation of students.”

Several local businesses and organizations in the Saratoga region will help spread the word and encourage participation. Esperanto, Smashburger and Kru Coffee are offering incentives to those who support the drive. Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC) will provide a special classical music package to whoever donates the most instruments. Cole’s Woodwind Shop and Saratoga Guitar & Music Center have volunteered to clean and prepare donated instruments before they are distributed to schools.

Ticonderoga Elementary school will be the primary beneficiary, but all surplus instruments will be distributed to other area schools.

For more information contact Evan Mack at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Read 784 times
Login to post comments


  •   COURT William Thibedeau, 25, of Ballston Spa was charged on March 20 by State Police in Saratoga with criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fifth-degree, a felony, and reckless endangerment in the second-degree, a misdemeanor, after State Police responded to a dispute involving the operators of two vehicles in the area of Brookline Road and Middleline Road in the Town of Ballston. Thibedeau is accused of making multiple attempts to run the victim off the road. Thibedeau and the victim were previously known to one another. When troopers arrived, Thibedeau was taken into custody. A subsequent search…

Property Transactions

  • BALLSTON SPA 72 Lancaster Court, $283,500. Arthur Wahome sold property to Matthew Desnoyers. 16 Pasture Place, $293,840. Rosetti Acquisitions LLC sold property to Michelle Brown. CHARLTON 213 Stage Rd., $199,000. Edward and Robin Larkin sold property to Erin and Samuel Zadrozny. CLIFTON PARK 9 Mountain View Terrace, $260,000. Eric and Caroline Price sold property to Kurt and Deborah Kelly. 200 Moe Rd., $392,500. Lifeline Homes LLC sold property to Matthew Server and Tara Morales. 10 Casablanca Court, $294,900. Ann Gauthier sold property to Ashley and Aaron Girard. GALWAY 1315 Perth Rd., $180,200. Shereen Raucci sold property to Corbin Daino. GREENFIELD…
  • NYPA
  • Saratoga County Chamber
  • BBB Accredited Business
  • Saratoga Convention & Tourism Bureau
  • Saratoga Springs Downtown Business Association