The Community String Project

The Community String Project began in July of 2009 with the goal of serving all youth in the East Bay area, regardless of income, through an innovative, school-based music program centered on string instruments. In addition to the value of learning how to play an instrument (which has been shown to increase academic performance), students also benefit from being involved in a supportive activity that assists with dropout prevention, fosters community engagement, and increases self-esteem. Read our complete history here.

CSP provides after-school lessons to elementary students (grades 3-5), a Youth Orchestra Program for middle school students, and evening beginner and ensemble lessons for adults and high school students.


Students in Grades 3-5 have the opportunity to play the violin, viola or cello. CSP owns and maintains an inventory of instruments that are available for rent to our students at minimal cost. Instruction is provided free of charge for students (up to grade 12) who participate in the free/reduced lunch program.  Currently, 38% of the youth being served by the CSP meet the criteria for subsidized instruction.

CSP anticipates adding 10-12 students annually and is committed to including youths from all economic levels. In light of the Rhode Island economy, CSP has experienced an increase in both subsidy requests and general participation as parents and educators seek meaningful and cost effective community-based programs for their children. Donations are gratefully accepted, visit our support page to discover ways to donate.

Our Mission

The mission of CSP is to provide affordable and accessible string lessons, transforming lives through an innovative music program.

The csp Vision

Community String Project envisions a community where quality of life is improved through music.  We strive to:

  • Enrich the community through musical entertainment.

  • Provide equitable music training.

  • Bring musical talent to the forefront.

  • Participate in the holistic development of children.

  • Provide performance opportunities for participants in CSP.

meet Our talented instructors

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CSP is always seeking highly qualified instructors on violin, viola, cello and bass, in addition to conductors for our youth and adult ensembles. If you are interested in becoming a member of the CSP team please contact us at the below address. Here is a copy of the job description.


To apply, email your résumé and a cover letter to  Call 401-500-1243 for more information

Board of Directors


Peter Bodner - President

Fran O'Donnell - Vice President

Catherine Hawkes- Treasurer

Christine Manchester - Secretary

Board Members

JoAnne Camara

Lavinia Gadsden

Jorge Gardos - Musical Advisor

Joan Wallace

Glenn Wolf

Honorary Board

Robert Arsenault

Bruce Carlsten

MaryKae Wright

Advisory Board

Dr. Mark Churchill - Director, El Sistema, USA

Francisco Noya - Resident Conductor, RI Philharmonic

Sebastian Ruth - Artistic Director, Community MusicWorks

Support the Community String Project!

Community String Project

Providing affordable and accessible string lessons, transforming lives through an innovative music program.

Contact Us


Phone: 401.500.1243

Mail: P.O. Box 513, Bristol, RI 02809

© 2019 by the Community String Project. |  Annual Appeal for Donations  | The Community String Project is a 501(c)(3) Organization