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During the 2014-2015 school year, Down East FolkArts received support from the NC Arts Council and the Arts Councils of Craven and Carteret County to bring a World Music program to fifth graders in both counties. Five or six times during the school year, artist Simon Spalding brought a variety of unusual instruments to several schools and enthralled the children with music and stories from other cultures. Many of the children would never have the opportunity to hear this wide variety of music or see extraordinary instruments such as these. Our organization is grateful to the generous people who have contributed matching funds to the arts councils’ grants to make this possible, and we hope to continue the program each year.

Simon Spalding with a Nyckelharpa, Sweden at Bogue Elementary in Carteret County

Moon guitar at White Oak Elementary in Carteret County.  The moon guitar is not from Japan but rather from China where is it known as a "ruan."

A Komuz from Kyrgyzstan, at Oaks Road Elementary in New Bern.

The Oud again, at Trent Park Elementary in New Bern.

5th grade class at JT Barber Elementary in New Bern, surrounding Simon.  Simon is holding a very old fretless banjo that dates from the middle of the 19th century.

Simon Spalding with an Oud from Turkey, at JT Barber Elementary in New Bern