Community Newsletter
January 2021
Dear Friends of East Bay Center,

Happy New Year! While 2020 was challenging in many ways, the Center met the moment by transitioning all of our classes to an online format, making all group classes free of charge for our community during the COVID pandemic, and establishing an emergency fund to help our most vulnerable families during this time of financial uncertainty. As we begin the 2021 spring semester at the Center (January 25 - April 30) and we find ourselves still in the middle of the pandemic, all group classes continue to be available for free online. Class space is limited so be sure to register online by February 6th to reserve a spot!

East Bay Center is committed to bringing art into the lives of our students, families, and community in the most direct and accessible way possible during this time. Until we are able to be together in person again, we will continue to produce artistic content online, as well as virtually connect our families to our onsite Student Support Services team to offer academic tutoring, help prepare college applications, and provide socio-emotional counseling if needed. For more information on community resources regarding COVID safety, please check out our COVID-19 Response and Resources page on our website. Regardless of the circumstances, East Bay Center will continue to provide engaging and inspiring content to our families and the larger community throughout 2021, whether virtually, in-person, or a combination of the two depending on the trajectory of the pandemic over the coming months.

Here's to a hopeful, healthy, and happy New Year,

Staff Members, Faculty Artists, and Board of Directors
East Bay Center for the Performing Arts

Spring Semester at the Center

  • Spring session goes from January 25 - April 30, 2021.
  • All group classes will be offered virtually and free of charge to the community.
  • Registration for classes ends February 6,2021. Class slots are filled first-come, first-serve as space is limited. Register now!
Now Accepting Young Artist Diploma Program Applications for 2021

  • The deadline for submitting YADP applications for 2021 is Wednesday, March 31st
  • Due to limited space this year, the Center will prioritize applicants with a love of the arts and who are entering the 7th and 8th grades in the Fall of 2021.
  • Click here for more information on the Diploma Program, as well as to access the online application form.
School Partnerships: A Season of Virtual Sharing + Flutes for All!

While the 2,500 elementary students in our School Partnerships programs were unable to perform on a physical stage at the end of the 2020 fall semester due to the COVID pandemic, families were invited to their students' Zoom music classes to watch and listen to what they learned over the semester. East Bay Center music teachers also prepared interactive activities and lessons for parents, siblings, classroom teachers, and administrators so they could participate alongside their students. 

The 2020 fall semester was also highlighted by Center faculty member Francis Akotuah (shown above), who brought back 100 traditional Atenteben flutes from Ghana to distribute to the 6th graders at Nystrom Elementary, where faculty member Kwaku Manu was teaching Atenteben classes via Zoom! 

Here is a quote from a WCCUSD classroom teacher highlighting the importance of our continued presence in the schools, especially during the pandemic:

"Music class gives students an opportunity to express themselves through song, practice rhythms, develop thinking skills/memory, and learn to read music, and engage in a special learning opportunity which the classroom teacher CANNOT provide!"
Virtual College Fair this Friday!

East Bay Center will be hosting a virtual college fair this Friday, January 22nd from 5:15pm to 6:30pm! We encourage all juniors (as well as any interested sophomores) to take advantage of this free event and begin to familiarize themselves with the world of higher education by connecting individually with our staff mentors. To join the event, follow this Zoom link. We hope to see you there!
Quarantine Performances: A Playlist

Even in the midst of a pandemic, East Bay Center students and faculty continue to create, learn, and grow through the power of the arts. To see our students' progress over the last semester of virtual instruction, check out our "Quarantine Performances" playlist on YouTube to see all group class, private lesson, and ensemble performances of 2020!
Meet Jean Chang, East Bay Center's new Controller!
Jean Chang, Controller, began her career as a staff accountant for Royal Greenland after moving to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2008. In 2009, she joined CP Shades as an accounting manager and later served as the corporate controller before joining the Center. Jean is delighted to be part of an arts organization where she can draw upon her experience as a musician and an educator in support of the Center's financial and operational integrity. Jean has dual master’s degrees in viola performance and composition from Ohio University and a doctoral degree in music from the University of Arizona. She also worked as a teaching assistant at the University of Arizona and as a pianist teaching first graders in the Tucson Unified School District as part of the Opening Minds Through the Arts music literacy program and continues to teach private piano and violin lessons to young students.

Make a difference while you shop. Search for gifts at to generate donations for East Bay Center for the Performing Arts.
East Bay Center is grateful for the support of:

Adobe Community Giving, AmazonSmile, Anonymous Foundation, Anonymous Fund of the East Bay Community Foundation, Anonymous Fund at Vanguard Charitable, Arts and Culture Commission of Contra Costa County, Bandcamp Inc., Beneficial State Bank Foundation, Berklee City Music Network, Louis L. Borick Foundation, California Arts Council, The California Endowment, Mark Cavagnero Associates, Chamberlin Family Foundation, City of Richmond, Clif Bar Family Foundation, Contra Costa County CDBG Program, Contra Costa Regional Health Foundation, S.H. Cowell Foundation, Crankstart, Crescent Porter Hale Foundation, D’Addario Foundation, Dale Fund of the SF Foundation, John Derning Fund of the SF Foundation, Dodge & Cox, ELMA Music Foundation, Equity Community Builders, Farella Braun + Martel LLP, Fenwick Family Foundation, Fullerton Family Foundation of the Marin Community Foundation, GEICO, Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation, Golden Gate Meats, Bill Graham Foundation of the Jewish Community Federation, Hellman Foundation, William & Flora Hewlett Foundation, Ifshin Violin, Interactive Resources, JP Morgan Chase & Co., Kaiser Permanente, Koret Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, Dean & Margaret Lesher Foundation, Richard & Emily Levin Foundation, Levin Richmond Terminal Corp, Littler Mendelson Foundation, Mechanics Bank, Meyer Sound Laboratories, Moca Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, New West Company, Overaa Construction, Pacific Harmony Foundation, Anon Fund of the Peace Development Fund, Quest Foundation, San Francisco Foundation, Irene S. Scully Family Fund of the Marin Community Foundation, Sequoia Trust of the San Francisco Foundation, Morris Stulsaft Foundation, Tencue, Travis Credit Union, Wayne & Gladys Valley Foundation, Wareham Development, Wells Fargo Bank, Bernard E. & Alba Witkin Charitable Foundation, Wolfgang Fund of the East Bay Community Foundation, Zalec Familian & Lilian Levinson Foundation, Zellerbach Family Foundation Community Arts COVID Response Fund, and Corporate Employee Gift Programs at Adobe, AT&T, Autodesk, Bank of America, Chevron, Clorox, Dolby, GE, Kaiser, LPL Investors, Oracle, PG&E, Semantec, UPS, Wells Fargo, Verisk, Walt Disney and City, State, Federal employees.

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