Beautiful music was followed by enthusiastic applause on March 3, when the charity concert Music for Life was held.
The concert had been arranged as an independent project by Julia Koponen, who is in her third and last year at the Cathedral High School in Skara in the Music and Production Program.
We at Happy Child struggle to find the words to convey our admiration for Julia’s wonderful work.
She had filled the stage with 16 talented youths and a wonderful 13-member children’s choir. Together, these young artists provided hours of musical entertainment as part of the sold-out event at the Skövde Municipal Theater.
That would have been fantastic in and of itself, but in addition, the concert raised SEK 42,643 for Barnhem and Happy Child.
Thanks, Julia – you are awesome!
Read Julia’s own story about the concert and all the effort that went into making it a reality.
JMy name is Julia Koponen, I am 18 years old, and I am a third-year student in the Music and Production program at the Cathedral High School in Skara. All students who are in their third and final year do a project, and I decided to do some form of concert.
I was inspired by the TV show Glee and started planning a big concert with a lot of flashy numbers and dancing. Donating money to a charity is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time, and I would therefore turn it into a charity concert!
Personally I had very high expectations of what I’d be able to accomplish; I was sure that the concert would yield a profit.
When I had to select a recipient I knew that I didn’t want to donate to any of the largest and most well-known organizations, since money often disappears along the way due to intermediaries, etc.
I had the idea from the start that I’d donate it to some place in Thailand, since I’ve been there for vacation and I’ve seen what it’s like. Those who are poor are truly poor and the Thai are such wonderful people, it is awful that so many are in such a bad state. I went on Google and searched for an orphanage in Thailand. At first I found only pages in Thai, but then I came upon Pernilla Wahlgren’s blog. She had written about Happy Child and had links to the web page. Once I’d read it all I decided on the spot that that’s where the money would be sent, because that’s where they would truly be put to good use.
Once that decision had been made, I could start planning the actual concert.
I picked March 3, 2011 as the date and tentatively booked the Skövde Municipal Theater.
Coming up with a good name for the concert was difficult, it had to mean something.
Finally my mother and I came up with the perfect name, Music for Life.
It was good all around and now that we had a name, I could get to work for real!
Sponsors needed to be found, bank accounts needed to be opened, fellow crew members needed to be contacted, and songs had to be rehearsed. There were a lot of things that needed to be taken care of!
I put together my own children’s choir made up of 13 kids, who came to my house once a week to sing, and I contacted newspapers and radio stations to market Music for Life. I was on Radio Skaraborg, as part of the program called På tu man hand (In Private), I had an article published in the local paper, Skaraborgs Allehanda, SLA, as well as in the newspaper Äntligen (Finally), and I had two sponsored ads in SLA. That marketing helped me tremendously in terms of selling tickets!
I had hoped to find sponsors who would be able to cover the fixed costs, and the companies that sponsored me with money were:
Some companies also sponsored me by providing food for the crew members, stage outfits, prizes for the raffle, advertisement, a rehearsal facility, and the like:
Livingroom Sports and Harmony
Skövde Municipal School of Music
The band Showkanalen was the accompanying band during the concert and they are also one of my sponsors.
Emcees were Cecilia, Bodil, Elina, and Johanna from the band called Timotej and I am very grateful for their contribution, they did a fabulous job!
The concert was about 1.5 hrs long, with the following songs and soloists:
Show Must Go On – Everyone
Nothing Compares 2 U – Amanda Larsson
Think – Christine Nordström Hames
21 Guns – Amanda Koponen, Julia Koponen, Erica Jönsson
Don’t Stop Believing – Oskar Persson
Inte jag, inte kär – Jonna Sandén
Shackles – Erica Jönsson
Tell Me Why – Children’s Choir
Disco Inferno – Julia Koponen, Oskar Persson
Dear Mr. President – Amanda Nilsson Bornhall
Shake Your Tail Feather – Richard Jansson
Hallelujah – Alex Kvarnestig, Olivia Åhman, Julia Koponen
Waka Waka – Amanda Koponen
Almost Lover – Mathilde Björklund
Proud Mary – Julia Koponen
You Raise Me Up – Anders Stenholm, Erica Jönsson
We Are The World – Children’s Choir, Timotej + Everyone
After the concert, several people contacted me, my relatives, and the Skövde Municipal Theater because they wanted to donate more money afterwards as well.
It was also possible to make an extra donation in the foyer before and after the concert.
Several people came to the theater to buy a ticket in person but had to leave and go home, but many of them still paid the ticket price of SEK 100 as a donation.
Working with Music for Life has been demanding, but also educational and above all a fun experience. It was an amazing feeling to stand there on the stage and get standing ovations from nearly 500 people. I cannot describe the feeling of knowing at the same time that children on the other side of the globe will see their lives improved thanks to my initiative.