PHILIPSBURG — Moving a grand piano from one position to another is no easy feat. This was a challenge for the National Institute of Arts (NIA) when planning performances and holding classes for everything from drama and ballet to singing and instrument tuning of the National Youth Orchestra. This was a challenge the island’s oldest charity – Island Gems Charity Foundation – has solved for NIA.
Island Gems, the all-women’s group that is the only charity to support projects on both sides of the island, acquired a piano dolly for NIA. This fairly expensive piece of equipment bears the weight of the piano and keeps it stable when moved from one place to another. This wheeled piano cart, to describe it another way, ensures the spindly legs of the grand piano are not weakened from constant moment.
An office printer/scanner was also donated by Island Gems to NIA. This piece of equipment is in constant need by the arts school. The old printer was also donated by Island Gems more than half a decade ago. The printer will be used to print class programmes, schedules, student information and play bills among other tasks.
Making the recent official presentation to NIA at John Larmonie Center were Island Gems Marieke Van Zadelhoff, Anita “Anu” Amarnaney, Ludmilla “Ludi” de Weever, Milva Hoeve, and Jody Rosen.
Supporting the arts and the island’s young talents is high on Island Gems agenda. The foundation, created almost 50 years ago, focuses on niche projects such as this one with NIA. The goal is to fulfil a need in a sustainable way. Projects with a long lasting effect are chosen for funding.
Island Gems does not give money to recipients; rather products and services are paid for or acquired directly from the vendor. This ensures the money is spent wisely and the needed items reach the intended recipients.
Funds for projects are raised annually at Island Gem’s only fundraising event – a costume gala. This year’s gala is set for Saturday, April 13, at Emilio’s restaurant. The evening’s theme is “A Night at the Museum” and encourages guests to envision themselves as someone or something found in a museum. Guests are advised by Island Gems to think broadly and worldwide as museums are found in every corner of the world.
Tickets for the gala cost US $125 each. Anyone interested in a ticket for the gala can contact any Island Gems member and call + 1 721 553 8372.