White and Williams Initiates String Instrument Donation to Adopted School

Instruments Made Possible by The Philadelphia Orchestra and Eastman Music Company
Philadelphia, PA

On Monday, June 5, White and Williams, in collaboration with The Philadelphia Orchestra and Eastman Music Company, donated string instruments to the Laura Wheeler Waring School, adopted by the firm's Philadelphia office. The donation was celebrated with a short performance for the school's students from a Philadelphia Orchestra trio of musicians. 

"We are very grateful for the donation of these instruments to help us grow our music program," said Principal April Brown. "The performance by musicians from The Philadelphia Orchestra made this day even more special, as they show our students something to aspire to as they practice their own musical skills."

The school was presented with a quartet of three-quarter-sized instruments, including a cello, viola and two violins for its music program. During the performance, one of the orchestra members played a violin that is part of the donation. The instruments will be a welcome addition to the developing program, as starting next fall students will have music class every day, an increase from once per week under the current schedule. Laura Wheeler Waring became one of only a few public schools with a full-time music teacher when it transitioned Gary Phillips, who already taught full-time at the school, to the role of music director.

Patti Santelle, firm Managing Partner, and Naomi Gonzalez, Manager of Collaboration and Access at The Philadelphia Orchestra, also addressed the students. Patti spoke about the influence of music on her own life and shared that her passion for music helped her succeed in school. "The firm is thrilled to help coordinate the donation of these instruments to the students of Laura Wheeler Waring. We are hopeful that this positive impact on the music program will translate to student success in the classroom and beyond," said Patti.

A highlight of the Philadelphia Orchestra's Health, Education, Access, and Research (HEAR) Initiative is an unprecedented partnership with the Eastman Music Company. In the summer of 2016, Eastman and the Orchestra launched a "buy one, give one" program. Incorporating feedback from Philadelphia Orchestra musicians, Eastman designed a new line of instruments specifically for the program, called La Scala. For each instrument purchased, one is donated to a Philadelphia student in need. To date, a total of 54 instruments have been placed in the hands of Philadelphia's young musicians, with more donations to come in the fall. 

In October of 2016, the Philadelphia office kicked off its adopted of the Laura Wheeler Waring School with a donation for the purchase of books for classroom libraries. Laura Wheeler Waring is one of three schools currently adopted by the firm as part of its Adopt-a-School Initiative. The Initiative began in 2012 as a way for the firm to give back to local communities, invest in education and provide a unique opportunity for lawyers and staff to engage through the investment of time, finances and resources. The firm has since expanded its initiative to other areas in which it has offices, including Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania and Wilmington, Delaware.

Laura Wheeler Waring Orchestra Day

Pictured above (from left): White and Williams Partner Gary Biehn, White and Williams Managing Partner Patti Santelle, The Philadelphia Orchestra members Tom Kraines, Jason DePue and Juliette Kang, Laura Wheeler Waring Principal April Brown, Laura Wheeler Waring Music Teacher Gary Phillips, The Philadelphia Orchestra's Naomi Gonzalez.

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