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The Heartbeat Music Project, fiscally sponsored by Roadwork Center for Cultures in Disputed Territory, is proudly among the recipients of the Lewis Prize COVID-19 Community Relief Fund Grant in the amount of $25,000 and the Mockingbird Foundation COVID-19 Relief Grant in the amount of $5,000.
These gifts will ensure our continued efforts in directly aiding the Navajo (Diné) community with emergency pandemic-related needs, as well as our continued organizational sustainability and development, including but not limited to increasing our instrument inventory and creating more jobs within the Crownpoint, NM community.
Click here for the full story: "Healing with Heartbeat: Music Education in the Navajo Nation"
Colburn School’s Center for Innovation and Community Impact Awards Social Innovation Grants to Support BIPOC Community
Colburn School
April 29, 2021
Conservatory violinist Gregory Lewis has received The Colburn School’s 2021 Social Innovation Grant in the amount of $2,500 for The Heartbeat Music Project, fiscally sponsored by Roadwork Center for Cultures in Disputed Territory. The Social Innovation Grants are a part of Colburn School’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion initiatives, which are generously funded by foundations and individuals from around the country. This gift will be used to purchase a combination of instruments and high-speed internet hubs so students can participate in remote instruction.
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The Heartbeat Music Project Receives the Mockingbird Foundation COVID-19 Relief Grant
The Mockingbird Foundation
June 2020
The Heartbeat Music Project, fiscally sponsored by Roadwork Center for Cultures in Disputed Territory, is proudly among the recipients of the Mockingbird Foundation COVID-19 Relief Grant in the amount of $5,000. This gift will ensure our continued efforts in directly aiding the Navajo (Diné) community with emergency pandemic-related needs, as well as our continued organizational sustainability and development, including but not limited to increasing our instrument inventory and creating more jobs within the Crownpoint, NM community.
Read More
The Heartbeat Music Project Receives the Lewis Prize COVID-19 Community Relief Fund Grant
The Lewis Prize for Music
June 2020
The Heartbeat Music Project, fiscally sponsored by Roadwork Center for Cultures in Disputed Territory, is proudly among the recipients of the Lewis Prize COVID-19 Community Relief Fund Grant in the amount of $25,000. This gifts will ensure our continued efforts in directly aiding the Navajo (Diné) community with emergency pandemic-related needs, as well as our continued organizational sustainability and development, including but not limited to increasing our instrument inventory and creating more jobs within the Crownpoint, NM community.
Read More
Ariel Horowitz receives Philip F. Nelson Prize through Yale University
Yale School of Music
May 18, 2020
Violinist Ariel Horowitz '20 MMA has received the Philip F. Francis Nelson Prize, which is awarded to a student whose musicianship is outstanding and who demonstrates curiosity, talent, and entrepreneurial spirit in the many dimensions of the music profession.
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How the Pandemic is Affecting the Navajo Nation
Smithsonian Magazine
April 24, 2020
Sharon Nelson, MA, executive director of the Heartbeat Music Project as well as he department chair of Diné studies at Navajo Technical University; and board member of the Navajo Language Academy is featured in conversation with Amy Horowitz, PhD, co-director of GALACTIC at Indiana University and longtime associate of the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. This story was original originally produced for the Center for Folklife Blog — appearing April 20, 2020 but was promptly picked up by Smithsonian Magazine a few days later.
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Ariel Horowitz receives Yale-Jefferson Award for Public Service
Yale School of Music
November 21, 2019
Violinist Ariel Horowitz '20MMA has received the Yale-Jefferson Award for Public Service in recognition of her leadership of the Heartbeat Music Project, which "offers music education for Navajo (Diné) K-12 students living on the Navajo Reservation," according to the organization's recently launched website. "We cultivate a safe space for our students to thrive and gain confidence in themselves, their abilities, and their local and global potential."...
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Healing with Heartbeat: Music Education in the Navajo Nation
Smithsonian Center for Folklife & Cultural Heritage
November 26, 2018
It is right before the final student concert at Navajo Technical University, and Keeva taps me on my arm. She is eight years old.

“Miss Ariel!” she whispers. She points to the violin case in her hand, and I know she wants to squeeze in just one more round of practice before she performs. I glance around.

As the director of The Heartbeat Project, I’m responsible for seven teaching artists and fifty-five campers, aged five to twenty-two, here in Crownpoint, New Mexico. Everyone in the hogan (traditional Navajo home) is busy setting up instruments, greeting parents and grandparents and sisters and brothers and aunts and uncles who have come to celebrate the accomplishments of the students on this warm summer afternoon. It is a happy pandemonium...
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At the Heart of The Heartbeat Project: A Q&A with Staff Supporters from Navajo Technical University
Smithsonian Center for Folklife & Cultural Heritage
November 26, 2018
Based at Navajo Technical University in Crownpoint, New Mexico, The Heartbeat Project brings Western classical music instruction to youth on the Navajo (Diné) Reservation. What began in 2015 with a phone call to Juilliard student Ariel Horowitz is now a burgeoning cooperative program facilitated by present and former music conservatory students, supported by professors, parents, and guest musicians. In 2018, Heartbeat marked its third annual summer workshop...
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The Heartbeat Project Finds Its Rhythm at the Third Annual NTU Summer Camp
Native News Online
June 6, 2018
For the past week Navajo Technical University has served as a musical haven for aspiring musicians as eight teaching artists from The Julliard School, Yale University, the University of Miami, and the University of Michigan conducted a music and math camp for regional K-12 students. This is the third year in a row the two-week Heartbeat Project camp has been hosted at NTU and it has grown exponentially each year...
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Violinist Ariel Horowitz receives 2018 Alumni Leadership Grant
From The Top (NPR)
Apr 23, 2018
21-year-old violinist Ariel Horowitz founded the Heartbeat Project, which helps fulfill a need for music education in the Navajo (Diné) Nation. Horowitz, who received Alumni Leadership Grant funding in 2017, appeared on NPR’s From the Top in 2012, at the age of 16. Ariel graduated from the Juilliard School in May, and is a current student of Ani Kavafian at the Yale School of Music as a recipient of the Julia Havemeyer Scholarship and Fellowship...
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Four Gifted Young Musicians Aim To Effect Change Through Community-Focused Projects
The Record: Music News from NPR
May 31, 2017
Every week, a small group of young people step up to a microphone and play, their music broadcast to hundreds of thousands of listeners across America on NPR's From the Top with Host Christopher O'Riley. For those of us who may have dabbled in orchestra or band as kids, the level of mastery achieved by these young musicians can seem superhuman. And, when the show is over, most heave a sigh of relief, not realizing that From the Top has more in store for them — they are about to be asked what can only be described as a "very big question." It is: Who do you aspire to be as an artist and a leader? How can you take action now to make a difference beyond the concert hall?...
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Learning and Growing With Navajo Students
The Juilliard Journal
November 2016
We had no idea how much the workshop we facilitated would mean to us in every regard: artistically, pedagogically, and as human beings. We were challenged, our horizons broadened, and our perspectives shifted. We came away filled with gratitude and excitement to pursue an even greater iteration next summer...
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Students learn the heartbeat of music, mathematics
Farmington Daily Times
June 20, 2016
The distinctive sounds of violins will travel through Navajo Technical University this week during a workshop for children that integrates music and math...
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