A grant of $375,000 from the W.M. Keck Foundation to underwrite the educational programs of the Los Angeles Philharmonic was announced Tuesday by Andre Previn, music director of the orchestra.
At a meeting at the Music Center attended by 70 students from Walter Reed Junior High School in North Hollywood, Previn said the grant was the largest such gift the Philharmonic Assn. has ever received for educational projects.
The Philharmonic's youth programs include Symphonies for Youth, In-School Concerts, Open House at Hollywood Bowl, Adopt-a-School, the Bronislaw Kaper Awards for Young Artists and High School Night at the Music Center. Ernest Fleischmann, executive director of the Philharmonic, said the grant will be used for all these programs.
"In these times of rising costs, it is difficult to justify expenditures that do not generate income. In order to make youth programs equally accessible to all, they must be presented free or at minimal charge," Fleischmann said. "The Keck Foundation grant will allow the Philharmonic not only to continue these invaluable programs, but enable us to expand them in the future."
Speaking to the students, Previn said, "I know how strongly young people can be affected by hearing music played by a wonderful orchestra, for all during my high school years I attended the concerts of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
"The foundation's understanding of the significance which the Philharmonic's educational outreach program has for the future quality of life in our community demonstrates a wonderfully enlightened attitude toward the arts."
The New-York-based W.M. Keck Foundation, one of the nation's largest foundations in terms of total annual grants, was established in 1954 by the late William M. Keck, founder of the Superior Oil Co.