Oak Cliff children’s music school needs your help

La Rondalla's advanced guitar ensemble with instructor Kenny Withrow at the Meyerson Sympohny Center earlier this month
La Rondalla’s advanced guitar ensemble with instructor Kenny Withrow at the Meyerson Symphony Center earlier this month

Seventy-five music students in Oak Cliff could be left in the cold unless their music program raises at least $15,000.

Oak Cliff-based musician Dennis Gonzalez started La Rondalla at the Oak Cliff Cultural Center in 2010 with funding from Big Thought. Big Thought provided start-up funding to La Rondalla, about $50,000 per semester, with the understanding that after several years the music program would have to share in the fundraising. Now that time has come. La Rondalla will receive $4,800 from Big Thought for the spring, but must begin to raise additional funds to support the program themselves.

So La Rondalla has opened a Kickstarter campaign to raise $15,000, which will take the program through mid-spring.

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Gonzalez says the group planning other fundraisers, but they need help keeping La Rondalla active when the spring semester begins Jan. 14.

La Rondalla offers free lessons in acoustic and electric guitar, bass guitar, drums and percussion to students at four levels: beginning, intermediate, advanced and super advanced.

“A lot of schools are cutting music programs,” Gonzalez says. “So if we can’t continue La Rondalla, many of these students will have no alternative.”

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La Rondalla ensembles often perform at public events in Oak Cliff and around Dallas. A couple of weeks ago, the advanced guitar ensemble opened the Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s holiday concert with a performance in the lobby of the Meyerson Symphony Center.

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