The John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation has proven to be committed to the promotion and enhancement of education in Greece across all disciplines and areas of knowledge and interest. One recent initiative the Foundation has taken is the programme known as “Little Musicians.” This programme was organised in conjunction with the Athens Conservatory and was presented in July 2013 at the Concert Hall of the Athens Conservatory. The “Little Musicians” programme has the objective of enhancing music education within Greece. The initiative works to achieve this goal by means of the implementation of a specialised music scholarship programme that provides educational funding for children with families unable to pay tuition costs for music education at this level.
Children aged 6 through 12 all over the Greek region of Attica can enjoy the benefits of the programme. The programme can assist both absolute beginners in music as well as children who have experience in taking music lessons. The organisers aim to create a “musical piggy bank” through this initiative. They expect that further financial reinforcement of these funds is possible through other organisations and individuals who want to contribute to the future of musical education in Greece. Each student’s annual tuition is covered by 50% to 100% depending on criteria that consider the particular economic circumstances of each family as well as the child’s inclination toward music. Auditions to select children for this music scholarship opportunity were held on the 25th and 26th of September, 2013, with a concert providing further support for the programme held at the Athens Concert Hall on the 12th of September, 2013. The concert featured the participation of faculty, students, and alumni of the Athens Conservatory.
This initiative serves as a further involvement for the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation in its response to the ongoing financial crisis within Greece, in addition to continuing the Foundation’s work to promote and cultivate culture within Greece. The initiative is undertaken alongside one of the most established and respected musical education institutions in the country in the Athens Conservatory. It is hoped that the programme will do more than temporarily relieve financial stress on future musicians, further contributing to the cultivation of outstanding citizens down the road. The Foundation serves to continue the public benefit tradition of John S. Latsis, with members of the Latsis family including Spiro Latsis sitting on the Supervisory Board of the Foundation.