Orchestras find harmony between art and social service

Posted on: April 16, 2013


In Friday’s (4/12) Huffington Post, League President and CEO Jesse Rosen writes, “I was fortunate to be in the audience recently when cellist Yo-Yo Ma gave this year’s Nancy Hanks Lecture on Art and Public Policy at the Kennedy Center. … Using live performance and video to illustrate his spoken points, Yo-Yo expanded the discussion from ‘Art for Art’s Sake’ to ‘Art for Life’s Sake,’ addressing both the critical argument for the role of the arts in society, and the responsibility of artists to see themselves as world citizens who are as concerned about our greatest global challenges as they are about making art. … I am encouraged that orchestras too are increasingly embracing this perspective as they expand access to their music making beyond the concert hall. The League recently announced grants to 22 orchestras from the Ann & Gordon Getty Foundation to serve people in health care settings or underserved youth in partnership with community agencies and schools. One of these programs was started by a Pittsburgh Symphony musician after her own treatment for breast cancer nearly 15 years ago. … Knoxville Symphony musicians work with the University of Tennessee Medical Center, where violinist Sean Claire visits the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. … Members of the St. Louis Symphony perform monthly in the Infusion Center of St. Louis University’s Cancer Center. Patients have begun changing their appointments to the dates of those appearances.”

Photo: Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Principal Cellist Anne Martindale Williams performs for patients at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. By Glorio Mou.

Posted April 16, 2013