The Festival experience allows
and geographical divides
This winter, the 2013 Chicago Youth in Music Festival will bring together young musicians from across
Chicago for an incredible journey of music-making and learning. Joined by a dedicated group of mentors
from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Civic Orchestra of Chicago and the Youth Orchestra of the
Americas, the Festival’s international guest youth ensemble, these young musicians will participate in a
series of intensive rehearsals and workshops in preparation for appearances onstage at Orchestra Hall and
in neighborhood locations around the city and suburbs.
The Festival is a biennial celebration presented by the Institute for Learning, Access and Training at the
Chicago Symphony Orchestra in collaboration with many of Chicago’s leading organizations in youth
music education and performance. In preparation for the first-ever Festival in 2009, Chicago’s leaders in
music education gathered to share their vision of a city where orchestras are considered an integral part of
community life, a tool for social change and a means of community activity and engagement.
The Festival’s primary goal is to extend and deepen the engagement of youth in music by enhancing musical
training and providing opportunities for youth from different parts of the city—and the world—to come
together to make music. Collaborative performances and special events spotlight many of Chicago’s youth
music providers, strengthening our musical community and nurturing the culture of collaboration between
these institutions and young musicians.
Mentoring & Collaboration
Participation in the Festival helps students develop their musical
expertise at the highest level by creating opportunities to work under
the artistic leadership of the CSO and with musicians of the CSO
and Festival guest artists. What makes the Festival experience rich
for students is not just performing together on stage; it’s also the
behind-the-scenes opportunities for conversation, mentorship, cultural
exchange and self-discovery.
The Festival experience consciously creates space for reflection, and
challenges students to realize their potential and creative energy
Citizen Musicians
.The goals of the CSO’s
Citizen Musician
initiative—to sustain and expand the role of music in civic and
cultural life and to empower musicians and music lovers to create and
enhance community through music—form an important backdrop
for participants in the Festival. For students aiming to engage more
fully in this area, the Festival offers opportunities for a small group
of student ambassadors to participate in leadership workshops and
shadow the school and community-based work of Civic Orchestra and
Youth Orchestra of Americas musicians.
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