Larry Karp Memorial Fund Established

Will Benefit Music Education and Appreciation in Schools

The Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival Foundation in Sedalia, Missouri, has established a Memorial Fund to honor author, collector, and ragtime scholar Larry Karp who died in October 2016. The fund was established to assist and encourage music education for children and young people and to especially emphasize the joy and beauty of ragtime music.

The Joplin Foundation established a committee to oversee the collection and distribution of funds. It is made up of Myra Karp, Larry’s widow; Casey Karp, Larry’s son and co-author; David Reffkin, Larry’s collaborator and personal friend; and Deb Bierman, Director of the Sedalia Heritage Foundation and Joplin Festival Board Secretary.

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The first scholarship from the Karp Fund was awarded to the Sedalia Smith-Cotton High School Orchestra for their preparation and presentation of a short concert of Scott Joplin’s instrumental music to lead off the 2018 Scott Joplin International Ragtime Festival. The orchestra under the direction of Mike Moellman was honored to be the first recipients from the Karp Fund.

The orchestra program was re-introduced in the high school in 2010 and has been successfully growing ever since. The group was proud to showcase their achievement at this year’s festival, Wade Norton, high school principal, pointed out. Norton was instrumental in re-starting the orchestral program.

If you would like to contribute to this effort, send donations to The Larry Karp Memorial Fund, c/o The Katy Depot, 600 E. 3rd St., Sedalia, MO 65301.

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Larry Melton was a founder of the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival in 1974 and the Sedalia Ragtime Archive in 1976. He was a Sedalia Chamber of Commerce manager before moving on to Union, Missouri where he is currently helping to conserve the Ragtime collection of the Sedalia Heritage Foundation. Write him at [email protected].

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