The Chicago Symphony Orchestra announced today that renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma will partner with the CSO's training orchestra, the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, for its first-ever Citizen Musician Fellowship Program during the 2013/14 season.
Ma will mentor eight Civic members in the one-year pilot program, during which the young musicians will work with music programs in the Chicago public schools and community organizations, receive musical entrepreneurship training with Chicago-based ensembles, and develop their own community activities and projects to celebrate the transformative power of music. The Citizen Musician Fellows will also receive guidance from members of the CSO and other professionals who have pursued innovative careers in music. The one-year program may serve as the basis for the future development of a two-year Citizen Musicianship Fellowship curriculum.
The Citizen Musician Fellowship Program is not the first collaboration between Ma and the Civic Orchestra. He also worked closely with the ensemble during the 2012/13 season, when he challenged them to play Beethoven's Symphony No. 6 from memory without a conductor.
Ma has served as the Judson and Joy Green Creative Consultant for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra since 2009. He has provided musical leadership and guidance for the orchestra's Institute for Learning, Access and Training as well as their Citizen Musician initiative, which encourages musicians and music lovers to reach out to the community by sharing music.
Complete information about the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and their 2013/14 season is available at cso.org.