By Katherine Johnson
The coed theater fraternity Alpha Psi Omega is well-known around campus for the various performances that it puts on throughout the course of the semester. The members of Alpha Psi are not strictly from the School of Fine and Performing Arts, but from all majors — accounting to education and everything in between. They share one common aspect: their love of music.
Through Alpha Psi, the members are able to come together to do something that they truly love with people they care about deeply. Junior Brie Applegate, a music theater major, is new to the fraternity and considers it to be “made up of great people who I consider a family.” Applegate is not the only one who feels this way; many of the members create lifelong friendships while in the fraternity.
Each semester Alpha Psi hosts two programs to entertain the students and faculty of Rider University’s campuses. In the past, Alpha Psi has held programs or shows to raise money, as well as awareness, for various organizations that support the arts.
While doing research on the VH1 organization Save the Music, sophomore Alison Haugh, the financial chair, decided that Save the Music would be an excellent charity to support. She started to put together the program “Singin’ to Save the Music” to raise money and awareness for the organization.
Save the Music is a non-profit organization that raises money to bring music classes and instrument lessons to students where the school budget simply does not have the funds to provide such classes. Since its founding in 1997, it has raised over $40 million for over 1,000 schools.
Save the Music believes that if children have some sort of musical training, the discipline in learning to play an instrument will help them later in their lives with other aspects such as creativity and critical thinking skills. Learning to play a musical instrument encourages students to stay active in school and makes them less likely to drop out.
“The unfortunate reality is that too many young children in underprivileged schools do not have the opportunity to experience music on an everyday basis, or sometimes at all,” Haugh said. “So, donating a benefit performance to save music in schools nationwide seemed like the perfect way to give back and inform the public about the importance of music in our lives.”
Sophomore Brian Long, one of the hosts of the show, believes that Save the Music is needed more than ever in this time of economic crisis because when school districts need to cut funding the first thing to go is music classes.
“Singin’ to Save the Music” will be hosted by sophomore Justin Kelly and Long, who are second-year members of the fraternity and extremely excited to be hosting the event. Kelly is a theater and communication major who only became active in the fraternity last semester, while Long is a secondary education and English major who is not yet active. As hosts, they are planning an evening of entertainment that will be fun for all who watch.
The program this semester will showcase solos of Broadway numbers as well as other musical pieces, duets, a piano player, original songs written and performed by students and dance routines.
Overall, the benefit performance seems to be one that will entertain anyone who attends, as well as raise awareness of a very crucial issue that is occurring throughout the United States. So why not support the cause and attend Alpha Psi’s “Singin’ to Save the Music?”
Tickets will cost $3 for students and $5 for general admission and can be purchased at the door. The performance takes place at 8 p.m. tonight.