Jakarta. String and guitar ensembles, comprising children from unprivileged backgrounds, performed before a large crowd at the Symphony of Colors fundraising concert at Museum Macan in Jakarta on Saturday night.
The little virtuosos impressed the audience with performances of the classic 'Orpheus in the Underworld' and Mauro Giuliani’s ‘Allegretto’, to name a few. The string ensemble played Sandra Dacdow’s arrangement of ‘Theme from Canon in D’ by Johann Pachelbel.
The young violinists and guitarists were all underprivileged kids, whom non-profit organization Be Sharp has taken under its wings.
Since its founding in 2018, Be Sharp has been providing free music education for poor children in a bid to lower Indonesia's dropout rate. The idea of Be Sharp actually came out of a conversation between its founders Emily Kumalaputra and Audrey Adiwana, who were only fourteen at the time. The girls were concerned that many children in Indonesia had dropped out of school.
"Being musicians themselves, Emily and Audrey thought that sharing their passion for music with underprivileged kids could motivate them to stay at school until Grade 12,” Be Sharp public relations officer Florin Cendana said at a press conference shortly before the concert.
To date, Be Sharp has 83 active students from elementary schools in Jakarta and Tangerang, as well as orphanages in Bandung.
Be Sharp would put together a concert every year, but the Covid-19 pandemic forced the annual event into a pause. On Saturday night, Be Sharp kids made a long-awaited return with their third concert, Symphony of Colors. The funds raised in the concert will go into supporting Be Sharp's programs.
"Be Sharp children’s music skills have grown tremendously over the past years. [...] You will see how much they have progressed in tonight's concert,” Florin said.
According to Florin, the Be Sharp kids are also able to learn their instruments at an astonishingly fast rate; completing two or three levels within just a year. She added, "because to them, this is such an amazing opportunity."
Be Sharp seeks to reach out to more students and expand to other cities in Indonesia. But to do so, the charity group needs all the help it can get, including from the government.
Florin said that the government's support would give a major boost to Be Sharp's plans.
"We believe that music can help keep children in school. We do not want kids to drop out just because they find school boring or think they do not have a goal," Florin told reporters.
For more information on Be Sharp, click on this link to go to the organization's official website.