The Yamaha Corporation of America's Band & Orchestral Division and Youth Education in the Arts (YEA!) recently finalized a long-term agreement extending their partnership through 2008 and further solidifying their relationship initiated in 2000. In what is the most comprehensive agreement within the scholastic music industry, Yamaha wind and percussion products will be recognized as the official musical instruments of YEA! and the US Scholastic Band Association (USSBA) for the term of the contract. The eight-time World Champion Cadets and perennial World Champion finalist Crossmen, both programs of YEA!, will continue to perform exclusively on Yamaha instruments during all performances. New to the arrangement will be the use of Yamaha amplification equipment by the Cadets in 2004 and Crossmen in 2005. John Wittman, manager of education for the Yamaha Corporation of America, said, "Yamaha understands fully the philosophy and future direction of YEA! and USSBA. We support their desire to elevate the standard of music education while providing inspirational performance experiences for thousands of students in the United States. YEA! and USSBA share the highest expectations for themselves as a team and bring those expectations to the students, thus molding fine musicians and people. We at Yamaha are honored to play a part in this movement and are excited to commit for an extended agreement. We remain committed to the highest quality in our products and join with YEA! and USSBA in a commitment to the highest quality of musical opportunities for our youth."

"We know we have a great thing going with our partners at Yamaha," added George Hopkins, executive director of YEA! "On the field, the Cadets have continued their tradition of excellence as a perennial championship contender, as the Crossmen have solidified their presence as a world class ensemble while performing with Yamaha instrumentation. Off the field, we have showcased thousands of scholastic music programs through the USSBA with the assistance and support of the great people at Yamaha and we now look forward to continuing that work for the greater part of this decade."