Festival, Summit, and Roundtable

We are thrilled to announce the Chicago Youth in Music Festival and National Pathways Summit taking place in Chicago, April 9-11, 2022! The Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chicago Musical Pathways Initiative, in collaboration with NIMAN, will host the Festival and Summit, bringing together students and institutional leaders from across the country for three days of musical learning, strategic conversations, and collaboration. On April 11th, join us for our Roundtable events and to hear performances by the talent young musicians in the Festival Orchestra.

Photo courtesy of Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra’s Nouveau Program

The Festival

The Chicago Youth in Music Festival will feature the talents of BIPOC musicians from pathways programs nationwide. Young musicians have been selected through a competitive audition process to join the Festival Orchestra and will spend three days rehearsing with CSO Sir Georg Solti Conducting Apprentice Lina González-Granados leading up to an open side-by-side rehearsal in Orchestra Hall at Symphony Center with members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Civic Orchestra of Chicago, and Chicago Sinfonietta of Liszt’s Les Préludes led by CSO Zell Music Director, Riccardo Muti.

We thank our partners at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chicago Musical Pathways Initiative for helping to bring this project to life.

The Summit

There are a growing number of pathways programs in the United States providing specialized precollege training to prepare young musicians for competitive collegiate programs and vibrant careers in classical music. As the field grows, the National Pathways Summit offers an opportunity to bring together leaders from programs across the country to define pathways programs, discuss their efficacy, and have conversations about long term sustainability. The Festival and Summit will celebrate the activities, collaboration, and impact of pathways initiatives while serving as a catalyst for collective action for the programs dedicated to supporting young musicians who have been historically excluded from opportunities in classical music.

The Roundtable

Pathways programs offer specialized guidance and support to young musicians. These programs seek to form the next generation of classical musicians, championing a collective approach to diversifying the American classical music field and creating opportunities for aspiring musicians from historically underrepresented demographic groups. On Monday, April 11th, we invite all who are interested in the mission and work of Pathways initiatives to join us for our Keynote address and performance, sessions throughout the day, and the open rehearsal led by Maestro Muti.

The Roundtable will commence at 9:30 AM on Monday morning with a conversation with our Working Groups. Lina González-Granados will give the Keynote address and lead the Festival Orchestra in a performance of Valerie Coleman’s Seven O’Clock Shout, written in tribute to the tireless frontline workers of the COVID-19 Pandemic and the evening ritual that connected people during isolation. Pathways students will also share their insights.

Conversations will continue through the afternoon, culminating in the side-by-side rehearsal led by Maestro Muti.

The Roundtable will be an opportunity to hear insight from leaders of Pathways initiatives about the impact and growth of these programs as well as from the remarkable young musicians who are pursuing their musical dreams with the support of Pathways programs.

Interested in joining us for the Roundtable? Send us an email at magee@niman.org or register here!

The Festival Orchestra

Maestro Riccardo Muti conducts the Youth Music Festival Orchestra as part of the 2015 Youth Music Festival © Todd Rosenberg Photography 2015

Pathways programs participating in the Festival and Summit have nominated young musicians to audition to take part in the Festival Orchestra. Auditions were reviewed by a panel selected by the Negaunee Music Institute of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and we look forward to announcing the Festival Orchestra soon!

We thank the Paul M. Angell Family Foundation for their generous support of the Festival and Summit
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