THE POWER OF COLLABORATION
In July 2016, a cohort of young musicians in Philadelphia received a one-of-a-kind opportunity. Approximately 70 middle-school-aged musicians, all of whom receive musical instruction through member organizations of the Philadelphia Music Alliance for Youth (PMAY), took part in a joint rehearsal with NYO2, a national youth honors orchestra selected by Carnegie Hall.
July’s side-by-side rehearsal was held at the Curtis Institute's Gould Recital Hall, and included music students from PMAY member organizations specializing in orchestral music and training. The afternoon offered an important opportunity for mentorship and guidance between young musicians and more advanced, high-school-age players, with NYO2 players guiding and assisting PMAY musicians during sectional rehearsals and during a final run-through led by Lio Kuokman, assistant conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra.
NYO2 is a two-week, intensive summer training program organized by Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute for outstanding young American instrumentalists ages 14-17. 2016 marked the ensemble’s first year, and the orchestra’s roster reflects a focus on attracting talented students from groups underserved by and underrepresented in the classical orchestral field.
July’s event, made possible through partnership with NYO2 and Carnegie Hall and through the collective work of PMAY members, represents great potential for collective impact by PMAY and for future partnerships on a regional and national scale.
PMAY is a collaborative of organizations in the Philadelphia region dedicated to providing music education and performance opportunities to youth. The collaborative started in 2012, and its members share a commitment to improving communities through the regular study of music. PMAY has hosted the annual Philadelphia Festival of Young Musicians, an all-day educational exchange for students culminating in a combined orchestra and chorus performance for parents and the community at large, and its member organizations are currently engaged in developing areas of focus and initiatives to expand the impact of PMAY's work through topic-based working groups.