Last year, the Brookline Education Foundation gave “A Gift of Music” to the Performing Arts Department of the Public Schools of Brookline, under the leadership of K-12 Curriculum Coordinator Kenny Kozol.

This gift was funded through the 35th Anniversary Gala of 2016. After an application and evaluation process, the BEF funded this musical project, recognizing that the Performing Arts department is an important and valuable part of the curriculum and provides alternative opportunities for students to explore and develop creative talents.

World-renowned composer and conductor Jim Papoulis was commissioned to create original songs with and for Brookline students, K-12.

During the 2017-18 academic year, Jim Papoulis led songwriting workshops with students and music teachers from all 8 Brookline elementary schools and Brookline High School. The music was inspired by students’ hopes, dreams, and thoughts about life in Brookline.

Jim Papoulis and students created an original piece named “Let Us Rise As A People” composed through collaboration with grades 6-12 chorus, orchestra, band, guitar/ukulele, music production and general music classes. Students performed this musical piece on January 9 and 10, 2018, at the All-Town Choral Concert at Brookline High School.

The gift continued into the 2018-19 school year with Jim Papoulis running student workshops to create a song for each K-5 elementary general music class. These songs will become part of Brookline’s K-5 Performing Arts repertoire and curriculum for years to come!