As a former music student in Polk County schools, rock and blues singer Kathryne Agner is looking forward to performing Saturday in a five-band showcase at the Polk Theatre that raises money to buy instruments for students who can’t afford them.

Her band, Kat & The Dawgs, has played two previous Play It Forward fund-raising concerts and joins this year’s other acts who all donate their time: Brett Foster Band, Glass House Point, Soul 2 Earth, the Dan Signor Project and Polk school ensembles.

Music education “gives kids an outlet they may not have found on their own,” said Agner, a 31-year-old Realtor and graduate of Harrison School for the Arts. “Studying music expands young minds to be more creative in other areas of life, as well. It was the single most important part of my education.”

Kat & the Dawgs at last year’s Play It Forward

Doors open at 4 p.m. for the 5-11 p.m. show. Tickets, available via the Polk Theatre, are $10 per person; children 6 and under are free. Concessions and beverages will be available for purchase.

Play It Forward Polk is a local 501c3 non-profit organization which raises money to buy musical instruments for band and orchestra programs in Polk County public schools.

The instruments are purchased through Polk Education Foundation and provided to local public school students who cannot otherwise afford them. Band directors send requests to the School Board; individual student names aren’t specified, just the circumstance. Once purchased, the instrument stays with the school when the student moves to the next school level.

“We are proud to hear that no child has been turned down,”board member Natalie Oldenkamp said. “Play It Forward Polk is only four years old and we continue to grow and learn with each annual event. Our bands, sponsors and fans passionately support our community cause.”

Oldenkamp hopes the concert raises $20,000 this year, adding, “I believe that we have raised more than 50K over the years.”

Play It Forward poster

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