Thursday, October 9, 2008

SymphonyKids Spotlight: Ford Made in America

How do composers afford their living expenses? I'm sure many teach. Maybe they work a "real" job. Then there are commissions. A commission is when someone pays a composer to write a piece of music for a particular ensemble. Sometimes there are other parameters within which the composer must work. The Ford Made in America Project is an initiative that celebrates music, creativity, and communities nationwide. This partnership of 58 small-budget orchestras has commissioned award-winning composer Joseph Schwantner to write Chasing Light.... With the composer at the core, this program offers orchestras resources that enhance their engagement with communities, deepen their involvement with young people and promote their mastery of the music of our time. So how is it linked with our SymphonyKids Educational Outreach programs?

The organizations responsible for making all of this happen, the League of American Orchestras and Meet The Composer, have created a toolkit to help orchestras make the most of the Ford Made in America project. Included in that toolkit are two educational activities linked to Chasing Light.... The curriculum is aligned with national music standards and is designed to be accessible to teachers and students along the K-12 continuum.

Click here to access the materials on our website.

Here's a video about the instrument building activity included in the materials.

Watch the complete series of videos on instrument building here.