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The Keys to Success

World-renowned concert pianist Lang Lang brings the gift of music into a local school


The new piano lab at Explorer Elementary | Photo by Heather Jasner

This January, High Tech Elementary Explorer in Liberty Station became the first school in California, and the sixth nationwide, to receive a brand new piano lab courtesy of the Lang Lang International Music Foundation, the nonprofit launched by superstar pianist Lang Lang. The new lab includes 25 Roland keyboards, teaching materials and workbooks, and a full-time piano teacher.

Officially named Keys of Inspiration, the program allows 120 students in second through fifth grades to attend piano class twice a week. Teacher Becca Ung says exposure to music at a young age fosters “self-expression and self-discovery,” while making music together in a group setting builds community awareness. And the kids seem to agree. “My favorite school days are at the piano lab, because music brings light in my life,” said one third-grader at the recent ribbon cutting.

The program is just the latest in a long list of educational perks making Explorer one of the most highly ranked and sought-after charter schools in San Diego. Admission is granted through a lottery system, with priority given to low-income families. Now that’s music to our ears!


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