What's Happening at Project STEP
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2015-2016...It's A WRAP!

At the end of last school year, it was hard to imagine how to top the excitement of winning a National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award. However, 2015-2016 has been another record-breaking year of accomplishments, and we could not be prouder of our students and families for the hard work that they continue to exhibit every day. We end the year with over 40 performances under our belts, five masterclasses with acclaimed professional musicians, two successful matching grants campaigns, and many opportunities for reflection and celebration with our community. Now our students are off to music camps all over the country (and the world!) to have their own adventures before they return next fall, and we can't wait to find out what they will learn along the way.

Spring Recital and Parents' Benefit

On May 22nd, we held our annual Spring Recital and Parents' Benefit, sponsored by the Gregory E. Bulger Foundation, which is the culmination of a year of work, progress, and achievement. This year, all students performed in chamber music ensembles for friends and family and we ended the afternoon with awards and a delicious post-recital reception. The recital was a meaningful time for our community to gather together to celebrate the year's accomplishments as well as 11 years of service from our retiring Executive Director, Mary Jaffee.

Photograph by Abdi Ali

Saying Goodbye to our Seniors

On Thursday, June 2nd, we officially bid farewell to our two graduating seniors, Tristan and Itsva (pictured above). Both of these students have spent much of their lives in Project STEP - Tristan for 10 years and Itsva for 12. Tristan is heading off to Bard College and Conservatory in the fall, where he will study violin performance, and Itsva will continue her musical studies at Umass Dartmouth. We couldn't be prouder of all of their accomplishments and can't wait to see what comes next for them both!

Mary Jaffee's Next STEP

Project STEP's longtime Executive Director, Mary Jaffee, will retire at the end of June. During the past 11 years, Mrs. Jaffee oversaw the training of over 100 individual students in the core STEP program and more than 600 Kindergarten students in the FOCUS program! Under her direction, Project STEP has been family oriented and student centered. It has also focused on strategic growth, increasing the student body from 35 to 48, nearly doubling the budget, and developing the administrative/artistic staff from a team of 3 to a team of 7. Additionally, Project STEP reached a pinnacle in its 34 year history by receiving the prestigious National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award from First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House in November 2014. Mrs. Jaffee has displayed exemplary leadership, dedication, and absolute commitment to Project STEP. We will miss her and we thank her for her many years of service!

Photograph by Michael J. Lutch

Thank You!

Thank you to all of our friends for making this year extraordinary. It is because of you that we are changing the face of the classical music profession and providing a safe and constructive environment for our students to share their collective talent. Your generosity and support of our program helps transform the lives of our talented young musicians, offering them a bright future with endless opportunities.

If you have not done so already, please consider a contribution to our program through a gift to our annual fund before the end of our fiscal year on June 30th. Thank you and have a wonderful summer!

Photograph by Michael J. Lutch
Copyright © 2016 Project STEP, All rights reserved.

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