WFMT’s BACH TO SCHOOL Music Donation Program Expanding for 2021

By Julia Maish |

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Collections of recordings, online music subscriptions, and classical instrument sets available free to schools that apply, with more options than ever before

CHICAGO – October 7, 2021 – Boomwhackers. Ukuleles. Xylophones. Teacher guides. Classical CD collections and online music subscriptions. All free to Chicago area schools that apply, thanks to Chicago classical radio station WFMT’s popular BACH TO SCHOOL program, now embarking on its 12th year.

In advance of the Fall 2021 Membership Drive, WFMT announces that BACH TO SCHOOL, its free music donation program for all schools in Chicago and beyond, is expanding this year. Teachers and schools can choose from the following options:

  • a WFMT-curated Classical Chicago CD set
  • a year-long complimentary music subscription for teachers to Naxos MusicBox or Musicplay Online
  • their choice of five different instrument sets with instruction books – boomwhacker tubes, recorders, percussion kits, ukuleles, or xylophones
  • In addition, schools can also opt for a bonus from Classical Kids Music Education featuring digital music and a teacher resource guide for Bach Comes to Call.

Since BACH TO SCHOOL’s inception in 2010, WFMT has partnered with more than 500 schools in the Chicago area, enhancing their music libraries and classrooms with more than 2,000 gifts of music and instruments, while exposing more than 10,000 students to the works of great composers and Chicago-based artists and ensembles. WFMT encourages schools to re-apply every year to enhance their music libraries and ensure that their students receive these valuable resources. Schools interested in receiving a donation can fill out a brief online application each fall and spring.

Many teachers have done just that, and they and their students are fans of the program:

  • “Being able to open a musical library of successful, classically trained musicians that look just like them has been a balm for my students and an inspiration,” said Tori at South Chicago’s Vocational Career Academy, a BACH TO SCHOOL participating school.
  • Sharon at Benjamin Mays Academy in Englewood said, “Our school does not have an extensive budget to give each student their own instrument. I would like to thank WFMT for their generous gifts to all of our children. Music is universal!”

“WFMT’s BACH TO SCHOOL program was designed to help build the foundation of classical music for the youngest members of our community, and I’m grateful to the generous listeners who help to make it possible,” said WFMT General Manager George Preston.

A new BACH TO SCHOOL website will launch on the first day of the WFMT Fall Membership Drive.

BACH TO SCHOOL is made possible through the generosity of WFMT Encore Society members during WFMT’s Membership Drives. Additional funding is provided by the Ralla Klepak Foundation for Education in the Performing Arts. Ralla was an attorney with a passion for social justice and the arts. The arts opened up worlds to Ralla, and she wanted to bring them to people who might not have the same opportunities that she did. Sponsors also include Classical Kids Music Education, Naxos MusicBox, and The Chicago Poetry Center.


About WFMT
WFMT is one of the world’s most respected classical music radio stations, available on-air at WFMT 98.7FM, online at, and on the WFMT app. WFMT showcases superlative programs, concerts, and live events – from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Grant Park Music Festival, the Metropolitan Opera, Ravinia Festival, and many more. WFMT is also a leading producer and syndicator of a diverse selection of outstanding musical series, including Exploring Music with Bill McGlaughlin, the Beethoven Network, and the Jazz Network. Connect with WFMT on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, and attend WFMT’s virtual community events.


Bach to School Contact:
Linden Huebner | [email protected]