PRIZM in the Schools, one of PRIZM’s biggest educational outreach programs, kicked off at one of Compass Community Schools’ elementary schools. PRIZM faculty, comprised of local classical musicians and college-level instructors, teaches two days a week at Compass’ school in the Binghampton neighborhood of Memphis.
Students in third through sixth grade were first introduced to a variety of musical instruments. They listened to PRIZM faculty’s demonstrations on their instruments and then dipped their toes in playing the flute, trumpet and violin. With much enthusiasm, students selected the instrument of their choice to study throughout the school year.
Compass, a new charter school system in Memphis, opened its Binghampton campus at the former De La Salle Elementary. While half of the students are experiencing PITS for the first time, several students from De La Salle who enrolled at Compass are able to seamlessly continue their music education. A few fifth graders from last year even received scholarships to attend our PRIZM summer camp and festival. As the program extended to sixth graders, these students will immerse themselves in more challenging classes and repertoire this year.
This semester’s PITS faculty are Daniel Parker, Julia Vining, and Rachel Johnson on violin, Mark Woodring on trumpet, and Kelly Herrmann, Harly Chapman, and Natlie Thomas on flute. Students will perform an expo concert in front of fellow students, faculty and parents to showcase their progress each semester.