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Dr. Karendra Devroop, Professor of Music at Elizabethtown College releasing CD

Dec 9th, 2009 | By | Category: Features, Front Page

KarenDevroopBannerby Elizabethtown College

ELIZABETHTOWN, PA (12/08/2009)– Dr. Karendra Devroop, Professor of Music at Elizabethtown College is using his debut CD release concert to secure donations of musical instruments for disadvantaged students in South Africa. To secure musical instruments for the 2010 project, Devroop is holding an instrument drive and free jazz. Also CD release concert. Devroop’s debut CD recording titled “Reminiscing” was released in the US and abroad one month ago. The album is receiving critical acclaim in the US and Europe with FM and online airplay stretching from the US to Russia.

Devroop, together with faculty and students from Elizabethtown College, has established music programs (concert bands) for students impacted by AIDS, gangs and drugs in South Africa. So far, the South African Musical Outreach Project has benefitted over 100 students with musical instruments, books, equipment and supplies. The then heads to South Africa to spend a week working with students and music teachers in order to set up the music programs.

Two schools in the Kwazulu-Natal province of South Africa now have fully functional concert bands with music firmly embedded in the school curriculum. March 2010 will mark the third year of the South African Musical Outreach Project.Devroop and his team also conduct interdisciplinary research studies on the impact of the music program on the students, school and community. Several studies have been published and presented in the US and abroad attesting to the benefits of the intervention on psychological constructs that include motivation, leadership and teamwork.

According to Devroop, initial evidence from the longitudinal studies indicates that the project is having a positive impact on the students. “It is important to keep in mind that many of these students are orphaned due to the devastating impact of AIDS on their family and social environment. Last year alone, 30% of the students in our program were classified as ‘head of household’ meaning they lived by themselves and took care of their younger siblings. The introduction of music into these student’s lives is indeed life changing”.

The CD is a smooth jazz album of original tracks written and produced by Devroop. The free concert will feature an ensemble of highly skilled musicians from the Central Pennsylvania area on December 10th 2009 at Musser Auditorium on the campus of Elizabethtown College. According to Devroop, the purpose of the concert is to debut the CD but also to hold an instrument drive to secure donated instruments for the 2010 project. Devroop will donate all CD sales from that evening directly to the 2010 project and any individual that donates an instrument will receive a free signed copy of the CD. Last year Devroop and his jazz group put on a similar concert/instrument drive and were able to secure 22 instruments. He hopes to exceed the number of donations for next year.

The South African Music Program is being completed in partnership with faculty from the University of Kwazulu-Natal, the University of South Africa and Elizabethtown College. The project is funded through private grants and donations.

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