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Rella and Barney Cohn Music Scholarship Fund Awards Grant

The Fine Arts Booster Group, an affiliate of the Ithaca Public Education Initiative (IPEI), will award summer music scholarships through the Rella and Barney Cohn Music Scholarship Fund. Established by Abby Cohn in memory of her parents and in honor of the excellent music education available in the Ithaca City School District (ICSD),the fund will provide more than seven music scholarships for summer study through the Ithaca Youth Bureau (IYB) Summer Band and Orchestra Program. The Rella and Barney Cohn Music Scholarship Fund is administered by IPEI with assistance from the Fine Arts Booster Group (FABG) and the IYB. Contact for more information.

Michael W. Allen, Director of the IYB Summer Music Program, notes seven students will be the beneficiaries of Rella and Barney Cohn Music Scholarships this summer. “The scholarships are a gift from their daughter to the youth in our community. I am very thankful for these scholarships that allow students who might not otherwise be able to participate in the Summer Bands at Cornell University’s Lincoln Hall. It’s a great opportunity to be part of this special program.”

The Summer Band and Orchestra Program runs June 28 to July 28. Rehearsals are held every Tuesday and Thursday evening. Michael Allen directs the band program and Mark Lewis directs the orchestra program. Four ensemble sections are available from beginning to advance, with sessions starting at 6:30 p.m. Registration forms and scholarship information are available at the Ithaca Youth Bureau or on line at Questions may be directed to the IYB staff at (607) 273-8364 or by contacting Michael Allen at (607) 274-2295.

“Continuing music education is important to students’ overall academic, artistic and social development. Summer time music activities help middle school students, in particular, solidify their skills and continue music study into their high school years,” noted Abby Cohn. “My daughters benefited greatly from the rich musical offerings at Boynton Middle School as well as through participation in the IYB Summer Band and Orchestra Programs The breadth, variety and excellence of these opportunities have had a real impact on them. I particularly want to recognize Michael Allen for his leadership and enthusiasm. This fund also honors my parents and their commitment to music education in all its forms.”

The Fine Arts Booster Group (FABG) works in partnership with the Ithaca City School District to advocate for, support and celebrate all the arts for all the kids. The boosters support district programs and staff, and advocate for increased student access, participation and equity in arts programs. Formed in 2001 as an affiliate of the Ithaca Public Education Initiative (IPEI), the boosters believe the arts – music, dance and visual, literary and theater arts – are a central part of every child’s public school education.

IPEI is a not-for-profit organization that believes the education of every ICSD student is enhanced through community connections and support facilitated by IPEI for students and teachers through engagement, collaboration, gifts, and grants. For more information, see or contact 256-IPEI (4734) or or