The Burbank Unified School District and the Musicians at Play Foundation announced the return of the Music Is Instrumental benefit concert, which will take place Jan. 27 at 7 p.m. at Wolfson Auditorium at Burbank High School.
The benefit concert will be hosted this year by actor and comedian Retta, a music enthusiast and longtime defender of keeping the arts in schools.
The benefit concert marks the fifth since 2017, and the second since returning from the pandemic.
Performances by the All District Symphonic Orchestra and Choir, accompanied by world-class orchestral and studio musicians from the Musicians at Play Foundation, “are truly goosebump inducing and not to be missed,” said the Musicians at Play Foundation in a statement.
Together, they will perform iconic music from film and television to support “much-needed auditorium lighting and sound repairs in addition to ongoing instrument repair and replacement,” event officials said in a statement.
BUSD officials celebrated the return of the event, adding that the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent three-year restriction on live instruction, performances, and fundraising events, had a devastating impact on parent and teacher-led fundraising activities.
Proceeds from the concert will support John Burroughs and Burbank high school music and stage tech programs, as they continue to raise funds to narrow the gap in arts funding.
“Despite a six-year budget crisis, BUSD has maintained its commitment to sustaining student access to quality music instruction through maintaining music educator positions,” district staff said. “Fundraising efforts remain essential to ensuring all students have access to functional, well-maintained instruments and performance venues.”
Participating Musicians at Play mentors are members of the Hollywood Studio Symphony Orchestra in Los Angeles.
“The mentors we have for our ensembles help so much and Angel Valez is amazing. Getting to play on stage with professionals I’ve paid to go see before is just really fun and the crowds’ reaction is just wow,” said Zane Hodnett, a student in the John Burroughs High School band.
First published in the January 20 print issue of the Burbank Leader.