Contact: Steven Wasko at 313-873-4542 or Jennifer Mrozowski at 313-873-8401
Detroit Public Schools’ Emergency Financial Manager, Robert Bobb, announced today that the district will revive the Detroit Public Schools All City High School Marching Band, which has been defunct due to lack of district funds.
Bobb made the announcement after learning the band’s gently-used uniforms have been packed away and stored at the district’s CDC Warehouse for several years.
The Detroit Public Schools All City High School Marching Band, which had a successful launch in 2001, ceased to exist in 2004 for lack of funding.
“We are not only unpacking those uniforms, but we plan to unpack the musical talent of our students that has been stored away for far too long,” Bobb said. “Our students deserve every opportunity to be successful, and we plan to ensure they have those opportunities.”
The Pickard Family Fund has generously agreed to match dollar-for-dollar the first $25,000 donated in support of the All City High School Marching Band. In addition, Detroit Public Schools will contribute $25,000 in start-up funds for the band. Perfect Cleaners in Detroit has generously agreed to clean the band uniforms for free.
The district is also seeking the help of seamstresses and others who will provide in-kind services and donations to defray start-up costs and the cost of new instruments.
Benjamin L. Pruitt, Sr., Supervisor in the Office of Fine Arts Education, has created a plan to launch the band anew with the goal of providing opportunities for all DPS high school band musicians to perform in local, state, national and international music events.
“The Detroit Public Schools All City High School Marching Band will serve as a vehicle for all qualifying DPS high school musicians to participate and express themselves in a well equipped large ensemble with full instrumentation, highly qualified staff and very talented musicians,” Pruitt said. “The All City High School Marching Band will help to fill the void created in high schools that no longer have music programs, and will also serve as a tremendous positive public relations ensemble for the Detroit Public Schools and the City of Detroit.”
The band will be composed of 200 of the district’s best musicians that meet the criteria for instrumentation. They must audition successfully. Each applicant also must be enrolled in the band program at his/her current DPS school high.
Successful eighth grade applicants must join the band program in their DPS high school. All applicants must establish and maintain a minimal 2.2 grade point average in order to remain an active participant in the All City High School Marching Band. The G.P.A. of each successful applicant will be reviewed after each marking period to ensure compliance with this policy.
Rehearsals are mandatory and will be scheduled four days per week.
To donate, please send checks payable to the Detroit Public Schools Foundation, a 501 (c)(3) organization at:
Detroit Public Schools Foundation
18th Floor, Fisher Building
3011 W. Grand Blvd.
Detroit, MI 48202
For information, call the foundation at (313) 873-3348. Or go to the foundation’s Web site at www.detroitpsfoundation.org , where online giving will be available next week. Note: Only Visa, MasterCard and Discover are accepted.