The National Children's Chorus Receives Groundbreaking $1 Million Gift
Anonymous Donor Bets On Future of Young Musicians
Los Angeles, CA - (February 25th, 2016) - In a dramatic and generous gesture today, a philanthropist wishing to remain anonymous contributed $1 million to the National Children's Chorus (NCC), a unique performing arts program for students between the ages of 5 - 18, soon to be making its debut at Walt Disney Concert Hall. The gift, payable over the next four years, will help provide vital, college-level musical education for youth in New York, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C.
"The National Children's Chorus is quickly becoming one of America's cultural treasures," said NCC Artistic Director Luke McEndarfer. " This generous endowment-one of the largest gifts of its kind to a children's chorus-will sustain the NCC's outstanding programs and world-class performances. We are immensely grateful for this investment in the dreams and aspirations of our talented students."
Over the past few years, NCC students have been praised for their excellent music reading capabilities, and have been accepted at prestigious voice and composition programs nationwide, including Tanglewood Music Festival, Idylwild Musical Festival, Interlochen and the LA Philharmonic Associate Composers program. Currently, the NCC is pioneering new ways to enrich the learning experience for all of its students, and will be rolling out novel initiatives in the coming seasons.
"We are humbled and honored that our donor believes so deeply in our educational mission, and is willing to partner with us in our future growth," said Executive Director Cristina Demiany. " In 2009, the chorus consisted of a single class, geared solely towards learning music for concert appearances. Today we offer a comprehensive educational platform that includes sight-singing, musicianship in the Kodály Method, private voice training, composition and conducting instruction."
On March 13th, the NCC will make its debut at Walt Disney Concert Hall in collaboration with the American Youth Symphony, singing Tan Dun's Heaven Earth Mankind (Symphony 1997). Presented by the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the performance will serve as the Los Angeles premiere for the work. Other events this season include the NCC's Regional Auditions for students wanting to apply to the program, set to be held on April 16th in Los Angeles, May 9th in New York and May 12th in Washington D.C. Season finale performances will take place on April 29th at Royce Hall in Los Angeles, and on May 7th at Carnegie Hall in New York both with music tracing the diverse cultures found along the ancient Silk Road. In July, the NCC will travel to Hong Kong and Mainland China for its 2nd international tour with performances in Beijing and Xian.
About The NCC
Led by Maestro Luke McEndarfer and Dr. Pamela Blackstone, the National Children's Chorus (NCC) continues its role as a leader in redefining the concert experience by combining world class performance standards with inventive programming, creative lighting and an unparalleled signature stage presence. Venues include Royce Hall and Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, as well as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and the Kennedy Center in New York and Washington, D.C. The NCC offers an extensive curriculum of training for its student body, representing more than 200 schools in the nation's capital and two most populous cities. The program includes college-level conducting, composition, music theory, sight-singing in the Kodály Method, and individual private voice training in the bel canto style. Over 75 top-level instructors work with the vocalists each week to cultivate tone quality, breath support, and musical expression. In 2009, the NCC began its first professional-level performances at The Broad Stage in Santa Monica. Today, the chorus performs in many world-class venues including UCLA's Royce Hall, the Hollywood Bowl, New York's Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center.
About Luke McEndarfer
A pianist, conductor, and voice coach, Luke McEndarfer has been Artistic Director of the National Children's Chorus since 2004. McEndarfer is recognized for establishing the organization's reputation for excellence and adventurous programming, including numerous critically acclaimed interpretations of traditional works, as well as exciting world premieres. Forging unique performance relationships, he has also orchestrated concert appearances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Los Angeles Opera Company, Los Angeles Master Chorale, New York City Master Chorale, and the Joffrey Ballet, among others. The 2016/17 season marks McEndarfer's 13-year-anniversary at the helm of the organization.
For more information go to www.nationalchildrenschorus.com.
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The National Children’s Chorus of the United States, under the leadership of Artistic Director Luke McEndarfer and Associate Artistic Director Dr. Pamela Blackstone, is quickly establishing itself as one of the world’s leading treble choruses, with nearly 700 students in 18 ensembles, based in Los Angeles, New York City, and Washington, D.C. Collaborating with some of the finest music companies in the nation, the group has performed live with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Los Angeles Opera Company, Los Angeles Master Chorale, Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, Joffrey Ballet, Kronos String Quartet, New York City Master Chorale and American Youth Symphony, among others. Its groundbreaking Season 2017/18, entitled Building Bridges, features exquisite repertoire including notable premieres at Walt Disney Concert Hall, Royce Hall, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and the Kennedy Center. In July of 2018, the chorus will make its 4th major international tour to Germany, Austria, Czech Republic and Hungary.