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July 2013
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Grant Park Orchestra: Reaching Beyond the Pritzker

Fellows of Project Inclusion playing chamber music at Berger Park in the Rogers Park neighborhood

Fellows of Project Inclusion playing chamber music at Berger Park in the Rogers Park neighborhood

The Grant Park Music Festival always draws a delightful mix of die-hard picnickers, the more formal concert-goers, and the passers-by who just happen upon a wonderful concert taking place and decide to stay. What more could a festival want? More of that, please.

“If you can’t breathe together, you can’t play together.”

—Rudolf Buchbinder

Building community—this idea is as elemental to music-making as rhythm or intonation. When Rudolf Buchbinder made the statement, “If you can’t breathe together, you can’t play together,” he was referring to a phenomenon that happens hundreds of times a minute when an orchestra plays. Music binds players and audience with a common purpose expressed almost organically, without words. One only has to look at the international make-up of the typical symphony orchestra to see this at work. By extension, Classical musicians constantly look to expand their community. They’ve all known the sense of isolation that comes from loving an art form that isn’t exactly mainstream. To this end, the Grant Park Orchestra has joined with Chicago Sinfonietta to create Project Inclusion, a two-year fellowship for young, talented minority musicians which brings them into the ranks of the Grant Park Orchestra, provides mentoring, and provides opportunities to play chamber music in Chicago neighborhoods beyond the downtown area.

Hear WFMT’s live broadcasts from the Grant Park Music Festival this week: Wednesday, July 17 and Friday, July 19 at 6:30 PM.

See the video of Project Inclusion fellows Sarah Martin, Yvonne Smith and Jocelyn Butler playing music by Dohnanyi at Berger Park in Chicago’s Rogers Park neighborhood.

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