Seven teenage members of the Atlanta Music Project, an intensive music education program, are to perform in an international orchestra of 300 young musicians from around the Americas at a festival in Mexico City Feb. 28-March 4.
Stephanie Shapiro, director of development for the project, told Global Atlanta that Maestro Gustavo Dudamel, the 37-year-old music director the Los Angeles Philharmonic, is taking the Vienna Philharmonic on its first Americas tour including a performance in Mexico City where the students will meet up with the maestro.
Mr. Dudamel’s foundation, the Gustavo Dudamel Foundation, is paying for the lodging of the music students in Mexico, while Southwest Airlines is to cover their round-trip international airfare. Mexico’s consulate general in Atlanta has assisted in making arrangements for the students’ transportation needs and providing them with tourist information.
The students are to participate in workshops under the guidance of Mr. Dudamel who also will be directing performances by the Vienna Philharmomic. The culmination of the student’s visit is to be a performance including Arturo Marquez’s “Alas a Malala,” dedicated to the Pakistani Novel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai, who promotes education as a fundamental right of children everywhere. The students also are to perform Antonin Dvorak’s “New World” symphony.
The Gustavo Dudamel Foundation is being joined by Mexico’s National institute of Fine Arts, Mexico’s Secretary of Culture and the Arturo Marquez Foundation to create the four-day intensive Art and Citizenship Workshop for the young musicians from across the Americas.
Just four programs in the U.S cities. including Los Angeles, New York, Boston and Atlanta, have been invited who to participate with their peers from from artistic and community programs of the National System of Musical Development in Mexico, and from Canada, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Argentina and Chile. They are to take part in rehearsals, discussions and a final performance at the Palaio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City.
“We learned about this only two weeks ago,” Ms. Shapiro said, “Some the students didn’t even have passports, but they are all set now.”
The students who will be traveling to Mexico are Myasha Brooks, 15, who plays the viola; Alivia Carter, 16, double bass; Lailah Carter, 13, violin; Donovan Fuller, 13, violin; Danielle Liburd, 17, cello; Joshua Sheperd, 13, double bass and Landon Wilkins, 15, violin.
The students all are members of the Atlanta Music Project Symphony Orchestra program at the City of Atlanta’s Perkerson Park Recreation Center and attend Atlanta Public Schools including Maynard Jackson High School, Sylvan Hills Middle School and Wesley International Academy.
Founded in 2010, the Atlanta Music Project provides more than 5,000 hours annually of intensive, tuition-free music education for underserved youth who perform 40 concerts per year.
Mr. Dudamel is one of the most decorated conductors of his generation. Born in 1981 in Barquisimeto, Venezuela, he has been named Musical America’s 2013 Musician of the Year, among many other awards.
He is taking the Vienna Philharmonic on its first “Americas” tour, beginning at Carnegie Hall in New York, and concluding at the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, Argentina, with stops in Florida, Mexico City, Bogota, Colombia and Santiago de Chile.
To learn more about the tour, Ms. Shapiro may be reached by calling 678-520-5325 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org