Board Member Musical Career

PIF Board Member Has Storied Musical Career Vocal professor believes music matters to young minds When Julianne Johnson-Weiss was little more than 2 years old, she regularly climbed into the choir loft at Vancouver Avenue First Baptist Church in Portland during services. Rather than shush the curious child away, then Senior Pastor Dr. OB Williams […]

PIF Students Get Into Swing of New Year

PIF Students Get Into Swing of New Year Milan Johnson, 9, a third grader at Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary School in Portland, had one particular goal in mine when she decided to learn piano. “I want to learn the ‘Happy Birthday’ song so I can play it for my (relatives),” she says. Milan […]

“Music lightens up my day!”

Students share why they like music lessons Each year, when Play It Forwards re-enrolls children, we ask them a simple question on their applications: “Why do you want to take music lessons?” The answers offer a fascinating glimpse into the minds of our students. Again, and again students cite “fun” as a key factor in […]

Our Story

Our Story Having benefitted from free music education that eventually led to a successful career as a composer and pianist, Michael Allen Harrison responded to state-led budget cuts by forming a non-profit and embarking on the daunting task of raising money and awareness for the importance of music education. Today, the love of Marietta Harrison […]

Play It Forward Featured in KGW’s Giving Tuesday Article

Play It Forward Featured in KGW’s Giving Tuesday Article … Another local nonprofit aimed at helping kids is Play It Forward. It’s an offshoot of musician Michael Allen Harrison’s Snowman Foundation. That nonprofit donates money to musical programs and gently used musical instruments to kids. “Music is a way out for many kids, it’s a way […]

Pianos Gifted By Play It Forward Change Lives

Pianos Gifted By Play It Forward Change Lives The gift of music can change a child’s life. That was the case for Sandra Gangle, 74, of Salem. “I was a lonely child, and I was somewhat troubled,” she said. “My parents had gone through a separation of their marriage when I was 7½ and there […]

Playtime to Phenomenal

Playtime to Phenomenal “Gus started playing on a toy Christmas piano when he was little, his parents soon noticed he had an ear for picking out a tune. Thanks to the gift of a new piano and lessons his progression has been phenomenal!” Gus is a 5th grade student at Kairos and very passionate about […]