700,000 students across Canada unite in song on Music Monday

    5th annual simultaneous performance underscores importance of music

    TORONTO, May 4 /CNW/ - More than 700,000 students from nearly 2,000
schools in every province and territory across Canada are today celebrating
the fifth annual Music Monday - a nation-wide simultaneous concert to
celebrate the importance of music in our lives - and especially in our
schools. Students and teachers from coast-to-coast-to-coast will take their
music programs outdoors into their communities and perform the same song at
the exact same time, uniting the entire country.
    The theme song for Music Monday 2009, "Sing Sing", was written and
composed especially for this event by multi Juno-award winning Canadian
artist, Serena Ryder.
    The Coalition for Music Education in Canada created Music Monday to
celebrate the galvanizing power of music and demonstrate how that power is
rooted in school music programs. While most schools participating in Music
Monday are fortunate enough to have their own music programs, there are many
across Canada who have seen their programs vanish as a result of funding cuts
backs and insufficient resources. Whyte sees this as the epitome of why Music
Monday exists.
    "Music Monday is about the need to protect and enhance quality music
programs for every child in Canadian schools," says Ingrid Whyte, executive
director of the Coalition for Music Education in Canada. "The benefits of
music education go far beyond the classroom - music fosters imagination,
creativity, discipline and achievement in our young people. The skills they
learn through music and the arts in our classrooms today will help create our
caring and compassionate citizens of tomorrow."
    Music Monday has also garnered the recognition of all levels of
government with events taking place across the country. In Victoria, a local
band will play on the steps of the provincial legislature, while Calgary Mayor
Dave Bronconnier will recognize the occasion at City Hall. In Manitoba, the
Minister of Education Peter Bjornson will address the legislature about the
importance of Music Monday, and in Ottawa, the National Arts Centre and
several schools will take part in a concert on Parliament Hill.
    Since its launch in 2005, an estimated two million students and music
makers have participated in Music Monday, an event that has expanded and is
now being celebrated in Australia and the U.S.
    "This day brings an extraordinary number of people and organizations
together to celebrate the joy of music and to show how quality music programs
enrich the lives of students in our schools," says Whyte. "Each and every year
we're thrilled to see the growing number of schools participating in Music
Monday across Canada. It's a true testament to the desire students, teachers
and parents have for keeping music programs strong in their schools."
    Music Monday is celebrated on the first Monday of May each year at 10
a.m. Pacific time, 11 a.m. Mountain time, 12 p.m. Central time, 1 p.m. Eastern
time, 2 p.m. Atlantic time and 2:30 p.m. in Newfoundland and Labrador.
    For the month of May, the Music Industries Association of Canada (MIAC)
is supporting Music Monday and the Coalition for Music Education in Canada
with a very special promotion. Customers who purchase products in
participating retail stores will be asked to donate one dollar to support this
important advocacy program. For a full list of participating music retailers,
visit www.musicmonday.ca.
    "We are grateful for the dedication of our many industry and media
partners who help us spread the word about the importance of preserving music
education across Canada," says Whyte. "Their overwhelming commitment
demonstrates their support of our goal to enrich the lives of children through
music education in our schools."

    About the Coalition for Music Education in Canada

    The Coalition for Music Education in Canada advocates for the
contribution that music education makes in the lives of all Canadians. We
believe that music is key - in learning and in life. It is our goal is to see
that all children have a quality program in music through their schools. For
more information and resources in support of quality music education, please
visit our website at: www.weallneedmusic.ca.

    Visit www.musicmonday.ca for a complete listing of Music Monday events in
your local area.

For further information:

For further information: To arrange interviews or for more information,
please contact: Laurie Weir, Jason Squire, TRILLIUM Corporate Communications
Inc., Cell: (416) 277-2453, Office: (416) 322-3030, laurie@trilliumpr.com,

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Coalition for Music Education in Canada

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