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‘HSM’ Productions Granted Funding

The NAMM Foundation and Disney Channel have announced the recipients of a grant program encouraging middle and high schools across the country to put on their own stage productions of the network’s telefilm High School Musical.

In addition to trying to get kids involved with the arts, “Disney’s High School Musical: The Music in You Grant Program” provides a $5,000 monetary grant and school license to produce High School Musical. The production funds are earmarked for such music and arts-related educational costs as hiring music and dance coaches, as well as lighting and sound for schools lacking such equipment.

The announcement was made Jan 18 at the NAMM Show, the largest international music products trade show in the United States. HSM star Olesya Rulin, who plays Kelsi Nielsen in both of the telemovies, read the following list of grant recipients: Booker T. Washington High School, Houston;  BYNG Schools Ada, Okla.;      Cheektowaga Central, Cheektowaga, N.Y.; Cranston High Schools East and West, Cranston, R.I.; Dwight Morrow High School, Englewood, N.J.; Eau Clair High School, Columbia, S.C.; L.A. Webber High School, Lyndonville, N.Y; Marana Middle School, Marana, Ariz.; Patrick Henry Middle School, Granada Hills, Calif.; and Ridgeview Charter School, Atlanta..

“These grants will give schools the opportunity to share in this experience,” said Adam Sanderson, senior vice president, brand marketing, Disney ABC Cable Networks Group, in a statement. “We want to thank and applaud all of the schools that applied for the grant program and we encourage their continued support for music and arts education activities, which allow kids to express their talent, imagination and creativity.”

Last year, NAMM and Disney Channel teamed up to create projects supporting the public affairs initiative, which included High School Musical: The Music in You, a “documusical” that chronicled a school theater production of HSM in Fort Worth, Texas. 

Additional joint initiatives were “The Music in You” micro Web site, featuring interactive music and arts activities; public service announcements encouraging students to get involved in music and arts and communities to invest in more performing arts opportunities for kids; and a series of interstitials that aired on Disney Channel, and Radio Disney, illustrating students involvement in the arts as part of their core curriculum