OurCity San Diego January/February 2013 : Page 8

4 Support the San Diego Youth Symphony The symphony was started in 1945 as an orchestra for the best high school musicians in San Diego. But the pro-gram has grown during the years to pro-vide kids of all different skill levels the opportunity to study classical music. Its newest program is the Community Opus Project, which offers commu-nity-based music programs for at-risk youth. The project offers free programs to schools and community centers in underserved communities. SDYS began the first phase of this multiyear effort by implementing pilot Opus sites at Otay and Lauderbach elementary schools in Chula Vista in 2010. The program was so successful, that the following year it was expanded to four more Chula Vista elementary schools. Prior to this pro-In a time when school budgets are tight and music programs are one of the first to get cut, the San Diego Youth Sym-phony & Conservatory provides a place where 1,200 youth can learn and explore the world of classical music. SDYS won the Our City Good List competition, beating out 19 other non-profits that were nominated as the best service organizations for 2012. “As the school music landscape has changed, particularly as school orches-tra programs have diminished over the years, more and more students have enrolled in our program,” said Dalouge Smith, president and CEO of SDYS. “We now have 10 different ensembles — six orchestras and strings groups, and four wind groups.” 8 Our City San Diego | Jan/Feb 2013

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