Guitars Over Guns to Hold First Annual Choose Your Sound
Benefit Concert August 23 in Miami Beach
Event to feature live music, fine art exhibition, and silent auction
to benefit music education programs for at-risk youth
MIAMI, FL August 5, 2014 — Guitars Over Guns, a Miami-based nonprofit that provides mentoring to at-risk youth through music education and performance, announced today that it will hold its first annual Choose Your Sound benefit concert on Saturday, August 23rd from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM at the Gleason Room backstage at the Fillmore in Miami Beach (1700 Washington Ave). Tickets are available for $100 at http://bit.ly/GOGOGala.
Guitars Over Guns (GOGO) president and co-founder Chad Bernstein launched the organization in 2008 to formalize the ad-hoc mentoring that he and other members of the Miami band Suénalo were providing to local middle-schoolers. In partnership with Communities in Schools, the country’s largest dropout prevention organization, GOGO delivers a results-based, scalable model for bringing the joy and discipline of music-making to young people facing adversity in high-risk environments. Through its weekly programs, professional musicians forge positive relationships with students through one-on-one mentoring and instruction in music theory and performance.
“In addition to developing musicianship skills and strong relationships with local mentors, students who participate in Guitars Over Guns programs do better in school: 96 percent of GOGO students have improved their grades in math and reading,” said Bernstein. “The Choose Your Sound benefit concert will raise money to support our programs so that we can bring the transformative power of music to more students and schools in South Florida and beyond. We are thrilled to have a great lineup of bands and some of our community’s most prominent artists lending their support to our mission and joining us for what promises to be a fantastic evening of entertainment.”
Sponsored by Matusalem, Tito’s Vodka and Bombay Sapphire, the Choose Your Sound benefit concert will feature performances from local bands Suénalo, the Spam Allstars and Tomas Diaz as well as student musicians from the GOGO program. Roxanne Vargas of NBC‘s 6 in the Mix will host the event, and singer and actor Jencarlos Canela will make a special appearance. There will also be a fine art exhibition featuring work from internationally renowned artist LEBO (who will create a one-of-a-kind painting to be auctioned that evening), Krave, Bhakti Baxter, Alvin Hernandez and Eva Ruiz, and a silent auction of unique gift packages and donated prizes.
“If I weren’t in GOGO I’d probably be susceptible to gang violence, street fights and drug abuse,” said Amelio Joseph, former student of the Guitars Over Guns Program. It’s just a way for me to express myself, to just get my feelings out there. Life without music is not life at all.”
For more information on Choose Your Sound and to purchase tickets, visit http://bit.ly/GOGOGala. To inquire about sponsorship opportunities for the event, please contact Chad Bernstein at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 847.420.6327. Follow GOGO on Twitter @guitarsoverguns and join the conversation by using #chooseyoursound.
ABOUT GUITARS OVER GUNS
Guitars Over Guns is a Florida-based non-profit organization that was launched in 2008 by musician Dr. Chad Bernstein to formalize the ad-hoc mentoring he and other members of the Miami band Suénalo were providing to local at-risk middle-schoolers. Our mission is to help young people living in negative and dangerous environments to discover the life-changing power of music through a structured program of music instruction and strong mentoring relationships with professional musicians.
Local media contact:
Founder / C.M.O.