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Crooked Road receives grant for music education

The Crooked Road: Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail (TCR) has received a $10,000 grant to further the teaching of traditional music in Southwest Virginia.

TCR was one of 832 nonprofit organizations nationwide to receive an Art Works grant through the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA). A total of $23.3 million was dispersed, according to NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman.

Phase II of TCR’s Traditional Music Education Program generates after-school and school assembly programs and performance opportunities for the region’s youth. It also strengthens the educational foundation through distribution of educational materials, holding teacher-training workshops, and offering a teacher re-certification course that serves a 19-county region of rural Southwest Virginia.

Project Manager Jonathan Romeo said, “TCR’s Traditional Music Education Program promotes learning that is rooted in what is local—the unique music, history, and culture of Southwest Virginia.”

The Traditional Music Education Program began in 2010. It provides support to public schools, community colleges, and communities in Southwest Virginia for the development and implementation of traditional music programs, coursework, and instructor training.

In March, NEA received 1,509 eligible applications for Art Works grants, requesting more than $74 million in funding. The 832 grants awarded span 13 artistic disciplines and fields.

NEA convened panels of outside experts to review the applications. Projects were judged on artistic excellence and artistic merit.

TCR was founded in 2004 for the purpose of generating tourism and economic development in Southwest Virginia. Town of Pulaski and Pulaski County are member communities and New River Community College’s Fiddle, Banjo and Dance Club Jamboree’s is an affiliated partner.

TCR also recently received a Foundation For Bluegrass Music “Bluegrass Innovator” grant award. The $2,000 award will assist with the creation of a Traditional Music Artists Roster and implementation of school assembly programs through the Traditional Music Education Program.

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