LSM Newswire

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Cleveland Orchestra to share music with more Northeast Ohioans than ever before through Community Music Initiative

Orchestra to perform education concerts in Cleveland public schools for the first time in decades on September 23 and 24

CLEVELAND – The Cleveland Orchestra announces the Community Music Initiative, a new program designed to broaden and deepen the Orchestra’s connections to the community and provide access to great music for more Northeast Ohioans than ever before through a comprehensive group of new and established education and community programs.
“With the launch of the Community Music Initiative, The Cleveland Orchestra renews its commitment to the community whose name it so proudly carries the world over. With the launch of the Community Music Initiative, The Cleveland Orchestra is strengthening its commitment to the community and to music education,” said Cleveland Orchestra Executive Director Gary Hanson. “Beginning this season, we will broaden and diversify our programs to meet the needs of a changing society. We want to make great music and music education available to everyone.”

The Orchestra’s new Community Music Initiative is dedicated to transforming lives through music by:

• Providing increased access to the Orchestra’s music for more citizens of Cleveland and Northeast Ohio;
• Strengthening and deepening The Cleveland Orchestra’s ties with the community through long-term partnerships and programs;
• Nurturing aspiring young musicians in The Cleveland Orchestra’s tradition of artistic excellence, including supporting Cleveland Metropolitan School District academic and music programs; and
• Expanding lifelong learning opportunities by seamlessly integrating education into the fabric of all of the Orchestra’s artistic endeavors.

The Initiative launches in September 2009 with a special week of programs and activities beginning September 23. The week begins with The Cleveland Orchestra and Music Director Franz Welser-Möst performing two concerts in Cleveland Metropolitan School District high schools – John Hay High School on September 23 and James Ford Rhodes High School on September 24. On September 26, The Cleveland Orchestra and Franz Welser-Möst open the Severance Hall season with a special performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony that will serve as a benefit for the Community Music Initiative. And on Sunday, September 27, Mr. Welser-Möst leads the season’s opening Family Concert, titled “Meet the Orchestra.”

In addition to the launch events in September, the Community Music Initiative’s inaugural year will include the start of a new preschool project, “Musical Neighborhoods,” a part of PNC’s Grow Up Great: A Great Early Start in the Arts program, in which musicians and teachers use music to build school readiness skills for preschool-aged children in local Head Start programs. Other new programs beginning this season include a MusicMentors program supporting instrumental music in Cleveland schools, and a MusicMasters series of clinics and masterclasses supporting high-school band and orchestra programs throughout Northeast Ohio. In addition, the Orchestra celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Daniel R. Lewis Young Composer Fellow program with a free retrospective concert in June 2010, featuring new works created by fellows in this program over the past decade.

These new programs complement The Cleveland Orchestra’s already vibrant education and community programs, such as the Learning Through Music school partnership program (now in its 13th year), the annual free Star-Spangled Spectacular Community Concert on Public Square, the Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Concert and Community Open House, outstanding youth performance ensembles, Education Concerts and Family Concerts at Severance Hall, and a host of other programs that have introduced children and families to symphonic music for decades.

A History of Educational Excellence

As far back as 1918, Cleveland Orchestra founder Adella Prentiss Hughes recognized that the long-term success of an orchestra depends on the cultivation of audiences through music education and service to the community. Over the past nine decades, following Mrs. Hughes’s lead, the Orchestra has introduced symphonic music to more than 3.5 million school-age children. Today, with the support of many generous individual, foundation, corporate, and governmental funding partners, the Orchestra’s educational programs reach 70,000 young people and adults annually, helping to foster a love of music and a lifetime of involvement with the musical arts.


Community Music Initiative Programs

The Cleveland Orchestra’s Community Music Initiative is a series of artistic initiatives and new programs aimed at diversifying the Orchestra’s offerings and reaching more children, adults, teachers, students, musicians, and families than ever before. These diverse programs offer everyone, from preschool children to adults, the opportunity to experience music in a variety of ways, throughout their lives, and throughout the community.


FOR PRESCHOOL CHILDREN

Grow Up Great in Cleveland (New this year!) is a new partnership with PNC to use music and the arts to prepare preschool children in local Head Start programs for success in school and in life [in collaboration with the Cleveland Museum of Art, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, and PlayhouseSquare]. The Orchestra’s program focuses on reaching preschoolers at local Head Start sites by creating “Musical Neighborhoods,” music-based activities supporting school readiness for children, teachers, and parents; visits by Cleveland Orchestra musicians; and field trips to Severance Hall.

PNC Musical Rainbow Series (for children ages 3-6) are a colorful way to introduce young children to orchestral instruments in the intimate setting of Severance Hall’s Reinberger Chamber Hall. These lively 30-minute programs feature a single instrument or instrument family. Musical Rainbows actively engage kids with the music (parents and grandparents, too!) and are held on selected Friday and Saturday mornings throughout the year. Musical Rainbows “On the Road” take these popular programs to libraries and community centers around the region.



FOR SCHOOL-AGED CHILDREN

Cleveland Orchestra Concerts in Public Schools (New this year!) – In September, The Cleveland Orchestra, led by Franz Welser-Möst, will perform concerts in Cleveland high schools – recalling its school performances in the 1920s, before Severance Hall was built. These education concerts will take place at John Hay High School and James Ford Rhodes High School in Cleveland.

Education Concerts for Schools by The Cleveland Orchestra bring nearly 25,000 students annually to historic Severance Hall. These narrated, 60-minute programs, which for many adult observers bring to mind Leonard Bernstein’s Young People’s Concerts, explore basic musical concepts while introducing orchestral repertory through distinct programs for grades 1-3, grades 4-8, and grades 9-12. A variety of preparation and study tools assist teachers in preparing students for their Severance Hall experience, including an award-winning video titled “Get Ready For The Cleveland Orchestra,” produced and broadcast each year by WVIZ PBS/ideastream.

Learning Through Music (LTM), beginning its 13th year, is a collaborative and innovative partnership program with Cleveland-area elementary schools, linking music to the K-5 classroom curriculum to support learning in math, science, language arts, and more. LTM includes arts-integrated lesson plans that address Ohio academic content standards, professional development workshops, and classroom visits by specially trained ‘teaching artists’ of The Cleveland Orchestra.

Cleveland Orchestra Family Concerts (for children aged 7 and older) are presented three times each season and feature live orchestral music in Severance Hall. Each 60-minute concert featuring The Cleveland Orchestra and guest artists (such as gifted young musicians, Magic Circle Mime Co., and Classical Kids) is both entertaining and educational – for the whole family.



FOR YOUTH MUSICIANS

MusicMentors (New this year!) – Beginning in Fall 2009 Cleveland Orchestra musicians will work with selected schools in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District to support school string programs, spearheading a broad effort to strengthen instrumental education in Cleveland public schools as part of the District’s Strategic Plan for Arts Education.

MusicMasters (New this year!) will leverage the expertise of Cleveland Orchestra musicians and a new partnership with Conn-Selmer Inc., a division of Steinway Instruments, to support school music programs throughout the region. The Orchestra will offer middle- and high-school music programs small-group and full-ensemble coachings as well as clinics and masterclasses.

Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra is a full symphonic ensemble founded in 1986 comprised of more than 100 young musicians selected through competitive auditions. Players are drawn from more than 45 communities throughout Ohio. The Youth Orchestra provides serious young music students of middle- and high-school age with a unique pre-professional orchestral training experience. The Youth Orchestra rehearses weekly and presents three concerts annually in Severance Hall and three or more community-engagement performances in Northeast Ohio. Youth Orchestra members also perform in side-by-side concerts with The Cleveland Orchestra.

Cleveland Orchestra Children’s Chorus (grades 5-9) – Founded in 1967, the 60-member Children’s Chorus participates in performances each year with The Cleveland Orchestra and Cleveland Orchestra Chorus at Severance Hall and occasionally during the summer at Blossom Music Center. The Children’s Chorus performs at CircleFest in Cleveland’s University Circle each December and presents an independent concert each spring featuring a diverse repertoire of children’s chorus literature. The Chorus has also performed the National Anthem for Cleveland Indians and Cleveland City Stars home games.

Cleveland Orchestra Children’s Preparatory Chorus – The 45-member Preparatory Chorus is a training chorus for less experienced and younger singers that includes children in grades 5-7. The chorus presents two concerts each season alongside the Cleveland Orchestra Children’s Chorus for their CircleFest and spring concerts.

Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus (grades 9-12) was founded in 1991 to raise awareness of choral music-making in the schools of Northeast Ohio and to encourage more students to continue their choral activities through college and into adulthood. The 120 members of the Youth Chorus represent 40 different communities from across the region. The Youth Chorus presents an average of five concerts each season, and their activities include workshops and masterclasses with highly regarded choral directors and clinicians, and outreach programs across Northeast Ohio. The Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Chamber Ensemble was formed in 2008 to provide additional performance opportunities for advanced Youth Chorus members and expand awareness of the choral youth programs within the community. The ensemble of 20 has been featured on local television and in special Cleveland Orchestra events.



FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS

Case Western Reserve University Course “Inside The Cleveland Orchestra” (New this year!) – A new course for undergraduate students in the joint music program between CWRU and the Cleveland Institute of Music. Scheduled in a way that allows the class to meet at the same time the Orchestra rehearses, the class is structured around the repertoire the Orchestra is performing in a given semester. With music as a central focus, the course will explore relevant literature, philosophy, art history, among other topics. Students will attend rehearsals and have opportunities to interact with Cleveland Orchestra conductors and musicians through lectures and discussion groups.

Student Advantage Program offers high-school and college students discounted tickets to Cleveland Orchestra concerts, free open rehearsals, and free masterclasses led by world-renowned guest artists. Each year, two exceptionally talented college students receive private coachings with The Cleveland Orchestra’s Artist-in-Residence and are featured in a masterclass as part of the Artist-in-Residence Fellow Program.


FOR ADULTS

Cleveland Orchestra Chorus – The Cleveland Orchestra Chorus is one of the few professionally trained, all-volunteer choruses sponsored by an American orchestra. The Chorus performs with the Orchestra in four to six subscription concert weekends each season and in the Orchestra’s annual Christmas concerts at Severance Hall. In addition to touring on its own, the Chorus has performed with The Cleveland Orchestra domestically and abroad, including appearances at Carnegie Hall and throughout Europe. Since it was formed in 1952 under former Music Director George Szell, the ensemble has performed in more than 800 concerts with the Orchestra. Cleveland Orchestra Chorus members hail from all over Northeast Ohio, including nearly 50 area communities.

Blossom Festival Chorus was created in 1968 for the inaugural set of concerts opening Blossom Music Center with Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 (“Choral”). The Blossom Festival Chorus has often joined the Cleveland Orchestra Chorus in performances at Chautauqua and on Cleveland’s Public Square for the annual Fourth-of-July concerts, in addition to nearly 150 summertime concerts at Blossom Music Center with The Cleveland Orchestra.

Concert Previews – Cleveland Orchestra Concert Previews take place one hour prior to subscription concerts and are designed to enrich the concert-going experience for audience members of all levels of musical knowledge through interviews with conductors, guest artists, and Orchestra staff, and through exploration of the music by local and national experts.

Music Study Groups – Led by Dr. Rose Breckenridge, Music Study Groups follow the Orchestra’s schedule of subscription concerts at Severance Hall. Each class explores selected compositions from the Orchestra’s upcoming concert program through lively presentations, listening activities, and discussion. Participants, ranging from beginners to seasoned listeners, learn about the lives and musical styles of composers in addition to the cultural and historical context of the music, while also developing keen listening skills. Over the course of the season, classes cover a wide range of repertoire, providing participants with a greater understanding of the music being performed by The Cleveland Orchestra that season.

Program Notes – Concert program notes inform listeners about the composers’ lives and the historical background of the works performed at every Cleveland Orchestra subscription concert. They encourage open-minded listening to new works and provide fresh insights for hearing familiar pieces. Concert program notes are provided to every concertgoer in the program booklet. They are also available in advance online at clevelandorchestra.com. To access program notes online, visit clevelandorchestra.com and click on the performance date on the Calendar at the top.

Archives – The Cleveland Orchestra Archives is a working resource center that serves both the institution and the public. Its prime function is to organize, preserve, and promote the historical records of the institution, which includes The Cleveland Orchestra and its parent body the Musical Arts Association, Severance Hall, and Blossom Music Center. The institution’s historical heritage is expressed in a wide variety of media, such as letters, documents, sound recordings, photographic materials, and artifacts. The Archives encourages an appreciation of the Orchestra’s historical heritage by making most of its non-current records open to serious researchers of any age. Researchers are able to consult such materials as correspondence, press releases, programs, photos, recordings, scrapbooks, minutes, and annual reports. Research inquiries may be made by mail, by phone, or by appointment with the Archivist. Call (216) 231-7356 or email archives@clevelandorchestra.com to schedule an appointment or for more information.

“Meet the Artist” Series – These popular interview and luncheon programs connect audiences with artists from The Cleveland Orchestra’s current season. For reservations, or to be placed on the Meet the Artist series mailing list, please call the Women’s Committee Office at (216) 231-7557. This series is presented by the Women’s Committee of The Cleveland Orchestra.



FOR THE COMMUNITY

Daniel R. Lewis Young Composer Fellow 10th Anniversary Concert (New this year!) – This free concert, concluding the Orchestra’s 2009-10 season, offers the community the opportunity to hear works by Susan Botti, Marc-André Dalbavie, Matthias Pintscher, and Johannes Maria Staud that the Orchestra has commissioned over the last decade. Through the Daniel R. Lewis Young Composer Fellow program, the Orchestra supports composers during a two-year term by performing an existing work and commissioning a new piece, and engaging them in outreach such as masterclasses for college music students, and pre-concert lectures.

Public Square Star-Spangled Spectacular Community Concert and Festival – Each summer, The Cleveland Orchestra, with the support of a host of community partners, presents a free concert of patriotic favorites and popular classical repertoire on Public Square in downtown Cleveland in celebration of Independence Day. An annual tradition since 1990, the concert attracts up to 80,000 people to downtown Cleveland and ends with a spectacular display of fireworks set against the Cleveland skyline. Since 2003, the event has included a pre-concert festival featuring performances by Cleveland-based musical groups in the hours leading up to the Orchestra’s concert.

Martin Luther King Jr. Community Concert – Each January, The Cleveland Orchestra commemorates Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday with a free concert. First performed in 1980, this concert features The Cleveland Orchestra, choruses, and guest artists. The Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Award is presented at this concert to honor an individual, an organization, and a young person who have positively impacted Cleveland in the spirit and example of Dr. King.

MLK Day Community Open House – The celebration continues on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, with free musical presentations featuring local performing arts groups throughout Severance Hall honoring the life, leadership, and vision of Dr. King. The Community Open House also features activities for children (“Picture Yourself at Severance Hall” and “I Have a Dream” Wall) and performances by the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus and Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra.

Weekly Radio Broadcasts – The Cleveland Orchestra partners with WCLV 104.9 FM to share Cleveland Orchestra concerts with millions of listeners throughout Northeast Ohio and around the world. WCLV’s program Saturdays From Severance, broadcast each Saturday evening at 8:00 p.m., features live Cleveland Orchestra concerts as well as recorded concerts. On Sundays at 4:00 p.m., Cleveland Orchestra on the Radio features recorded concerts from the current season as well as programs produced from archival tapes. WCLV also features live broadcasts of Cleveland Orchestra concerts in Miami, and the Orchestra’s annual Star-Spangled Spectacular Community Concert on Public Square and Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Concert.

For additional information about these and other programs, visit clevelandorchestra.com, or contact the Education & Community Programs Office at (216) 231-7355.

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