Monday, August 25, 2014
Excel Michael Haonga has wanted to be a music teacher for as long as he can remember. His journey to hone his music skills has taken him from his native Tanzania to Norway, Uganda and now to the United States. Haonga will perform in Charleston on Oct. 2 at a fundraiser to benefit his fellow music students and Music For Tanzania.
Music For Tanzania, a local nonprofit group, is hard at work granting the dreams of these music students. Founded in 2011 by Elizabeth Tomorsky Knott, who taught at East Africa's only music-degree-granting University, the idea was a simple one. By collecting used musical instruments and sheet music from her local music students and others who were no longer needing them and shipping them to Makumira University, these donations are finding a second life with worthy Tanzanian students who are not financially able to purchase their own instrument or accessories.
In the last three years, the nonprofit has transported several shipments of donated instruments, sheet music and equipment to Tanzania. However, their goal to help students achieve their dream of a music career takes much more than that and funds are needed for transportation, scholarships and performance opportunities.
Music For Tanzania is funded entirely by donations and their main fundraiser of the year will be held on Oct. 2 at Upper Lance Hall, Circular Congregation Church from 5-8 p.m. The public is invited to attend.
In addition to the performance, food and wine will be provided. Tanzanian handicrafts will be available for purchase and the silent auction will feature many items including a group wine tasting, tanzanite jewelry, pamper basket and children's package. Tickets are $25 each in advance and $30 at the door, and may be purchased by contacting Elizabeth Tomorsky Knott at 843-442-9511. Credit cards are accepted. All proceeds will benefit students like Excel.