By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Sep 08, 2017 at 6:02 PM

The Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, 1584 N. Prospect Ave., is holding a musical instrument drive from Sept. 22-24 to help get playable instruments into the hands of Milwaukee children who need them most.

OnMilwaukee is a sponsor of the drive, and as a big fan of the MPS Summer Music Institute, I'm a big fan of the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, which works with the district to offer a great and affordable music camp for kids.

In addition to instruments like guitars, clarinets, tubas and ukeleles (among others; a complete list is here), donations of music stands, valve oil and other supplies are welcomed.

The instruments don’t have to be perfect, but they need to be repairable. The first 300 households that donate a repairable instrument will get a free ticket to Summerfest 2018.

Instruments can be brought to a number of drop-off sites, including:

  • Brass Bell Music Store, 210 Silver Spring Dr.
  • Milwaukee Public Schools Central Office, 5225 W. Vliet St.
  • 88Nine Radio Milwaukee, 220 E. Pittsburgh Ave.
  • Melk Music, 12805 Janesville Rd., Muskego
  • Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, 1584 N. Prospect Ave.
  • Wisconsin Conservatory of Music-Audubon Court, 333 W. Brown Deer Rd., Suite 2, Bayside

You can help even if you don’t have an instrument to give. Donations to the instrument repair fund are encouraged, and there are also opportunities to volunteer your time as an instrument in-take attendee or an instrument sorter.

For questions about volunteering or to schedule a time to help out, contact Danielle Wrobleski at or (414) 459-3450.

Complete details on the drive and how you can contribute can be found here.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.