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Richmond Chinese orchestra had been practicing with buckets until government funding

The B.C. government’s Arts Infrastructure Program selected two Richmond arts organizations to receive a grant.
The Canadian YC Chinese Orchestra Association just received government funding to buy percussion instruments.

The Canadian YC Chinese Orchestra Association will be able to bin the buckets and buy much-needed percussion instruments, thanks to provincial government funding. 

The orchestra was established 16 years ago, and it holds annual concerts as well as performances at senior homes. 

But they were so strapped for cash that they had been using buckets at rehearsals. 

Zhongcai Yang, the orchestra’s founder, said they were “very happy” to receive the $39,000 grant, given that, up until now, he had been paying for instruments out of his own pocket.  

“We had to practice with buckets instead,” said Yang. 

Yang is also planning to use the money to buy a cello, as the only one they had was broken in an accident. 

Apart from the orchestra, the Gateway Theatre Society also received around $12,000 to purchase specialized equipment.  

The two organizations were selected by an independent committee made up of peers from the arts sector. 

“During the challenges of this pandemic, I know that many of us found comfort and joy in arts and culture,” said Aman Singh, MLA for Richmond-Queensborough.  

“I am proud to see the Arts Infrastructure Program supporting local arts and culture organizations, both to continue their work in the future and to give thanks for all they have given us already.” 

The Arts Infrastructure grant provides grants to arts and cultural organizations for developing and enhancing arts spaces in B.C., and it will reopen for applications next fall.