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Guitar Center replaces instruments stolen in a robbery at the Santa Monica Music Center

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Instruments replaced after the third shoplifting

From Dolores Quintana

Guitar Center has replaced the instruments stolen in the robbery of the Santa Monica Music Center, the family business owned by Santa Monica City Council, Lana Negrete.

The Santa Monica Music Center was robbed twice in 2021, most recently on November 23, and three times in the wake of the pandemic. The instruments stolen and damaged in that robbery were to be used by Councilor Negrete’s non-profit after-school program called Outreach Through The Arts. OTTA offers underserved young people music lessons and instruments so that, even if they cannot afford their own instruments, they can learn to play and are on the way to realizing their musical dreams.

OTTA received a grant from the Guitar Center Music Foundation and on December 2nd made the guitars that were lost in the break-in available to the program. Guitar Center was ready to help when they heard of the robbery.

“The Santa Monica Music Center has an incredible after-school music program, Outreach Through the Arts, for children and was recently selected as a Guitar Center Music Foundation (GCMF) grant. When GCMF heard of the break-in and the stolen instruments, they wanted to support the Santa Monica Music Center program and replace the instruments immediately. All stolen and damaged items have been replaced, including two electric guitars and a bass. GCMF Executive Director Myka Miller personally handed in the instruments and met with Councilor Negrete and Outreach Through the Arts students to learn more about their program, ”said Guitar Center.

After the Santa Monica Music Center was robbed twice in a year, with both robberies occurring within two months, the Santa Monica Music Center must be relieved to have received this help, which ensures that children continue to learn and grow as musicians.

Myka Miller, Executive Director of the Guitar Center Music Foundation, spoke about why the GCMF intended to replace these instruments for OTTA, Councilor Negrete’s passionate project.

“The Santa Monica Music Center is an important part of the Santa Monica music community, and the Guitar Center Music Foundation is excited to support their work with this donation,” Miller told the Santa Monica Mirror. “We hope these instruments will give their music students the confidence to expand their skills and encourage them to find joy in making music.”

“It made today magical,” wrote the Santa Monica Music Center on December 2nd in a social media post following the donation. “When you heard the tragic news, you didn’t miss a beat! Myka came and once again proved to us that mutual partnership and friendliness prevail! “

The GCMF’s mission is to support music education programs. The organization aims to keep music education alive and available in our country’s schools and communities. Founded in 2005, this public charity has reached out to over 300,000 people by giving instruments to music education programs.

“The Guitar Center Music Foundation believes that music participation is an essential element in the fabric of a sustainable society,” it says on its website.

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