On June 12, 2014, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association Board of Trustees recognized The Negaunee Foundation for providing a leadership gift of endowment and general operating support for the Institute for Learning, Access and Training. It subsequently was resolved that the institute would be named The Negaunee Music Institute at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in perpetuity.
Building on a rich history of education and community engagement programming dating back to the early twentieth century, the Negaunee Music Institute creates transformative experiences that awaken curiosity in and nurture a life of engagement with music. The institute’s programs share the extraordinary musical resources of the CSO through musical learning and training that annually engages more than 200,000 people of all ages with diverse backgrounds. Activities include collaboratively designed community programs; inventive concerts for children and families; educational resources; school partnerships; high-level training and performance opportunities for emerging professional musicians; music education advocacy efforts; and innovative projects that bring music to youth prisons, retirement communities, and hospitals.
The Institute benefits from the visionary guidance of CSO music director Riccardo Muti, Judson and Joyce Green Creative Consultant Yo-Yo Ma, and the Institute Board. Through Ma’s leadership, the CSOA has developed and embraced the Citizen Musician Initiative, which is founded on the belief that musicians who are civically engaged have the capacity to enhance the world around them and to inspire others to the do the same.
The Institute shares the extraordinary musical resources of the CSO Association with the Chicagoland residents to create and sustain connections to music for individuals and communities by accomplishing the following goals:
- Introduce young people to the symphony orchestra and develop an understanding an enjoyment of music through innovative learning programs, such as the Once Upon a Symphony, School Concerts, the Dream Out Loud poster series, and the Orchestra Explorers program.
- Provide Chicagoland residents with free or low-cost access to musical performances, events, and activities at Symphony Center and in community locations, such as UC-Woodlawn, the Cook County detention centers, and the Park Districts.
- Offer musical training and performance opportunities for youth that share the knowledge and skills necessary to nurture the next generation of musicians through programs like the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and the Percussion Scholarship Program.