Although concerts are the most visible aspect of the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and its programs, there is much more behind the scenes in the orchestra's education and outreach. The KSO has announced that it has received a first-year Getty Education and Community Investment Grant that will be used to expand the orchestra's Music & Wellness program.
This program, begun in 2004, promotes the use of music as an element of healing to over 6,000 patients, staff, and visitors in area hospitals. The program places professional KSO musicians in Chemotherapy Treatment bays, on Oncology inpatient floors, on Cardio-Vascular in-patient floors, in the Cardio-Vascular Intensive Care Unit, the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, brain injury rehabilitation areas, Senior Care in-patient floors and hospital waiting areas.
The grant to the KSO in this first year totals $35,000 and will expand its partnership with the University of Tennessee Medical Center Cancer Institute and include the hiring of a part-time music therapist. The therapist will be based at UTMC and will work with other musicians on patient programs. This music therapist will also lead a weekly class at the Cancer Support Community of East Tennessee in Knoxville.
The KSO was one of twenty-two orchestras receiving $425,000 first-year grant money, which ranged from $14,500 to $37,500 each, and required the existence of partnerships with local cultural and/or community organizations, such as schools or social service providers. The KSO's main partners in this grant will be the University of Tennessee Medical Center and the Cancer Support Community of East Tennessee.
KSO Executive Director Rachel Ford commented:
"Our Music & Wellness program has been in place for nine years and this grant will enable us to extend the reach of the program in our community as we hire a music therapist, offer professional development for staff and musicians as well as increase the number of performances offered to patients."
Other American orchestras receiving 2012-13 grant money were -- Allentown Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Brooklyn Philharmonic, California Symphony Orchestra, The Central Ohio Symphony, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Hartford Symphony Orchestra, Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Madison Symphony Orchestra, Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Omaha Symphony Association, Pacific Symphony, Phoenix Symphony Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Portland (Maine) Symphony Orchestra, San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory, Sphinx Virtuosi, and St. Louis Symphony.