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SMU Meadows Opens Doors to ChamberWorks Youth Orchestra

Free concert to be performed in Caruth Auditorium, July 21, 7 p.m.; public welcome

The ChamberWorks Youth Orchestra will perform a free concert at SMU Meadows Caruth Auditorium on Saturday, July 21, 7 p.m.

SMU Meadows School of the Arts and Ignite/Arts Dallas welcome the ChamberWorks Youth Orchestra to Caruth Auditorium on Saturday, July 21 at 7 p.m., where 50 middle school and high school student musicians will perform a free concert of Hubert Parry’s Lady Radnor’s Suite, Shostakovich’s Chamber Symphony, Op. 110a, Bach’s Keyboard Concerto in A major, BWV 1055 and more.

ChamberWorks is a strings-only classical music institute that provides musical and leadership training for students age 11–18 from Garland, Richardson and North Dallas. The concert will be the culmination of a two-week ChamberWorks Music Institute program in which the students received rigorous courses in musicianship as well as training in marketing skills, entrepreneurship, problem-solving, team-building, attentive listening and dealing with performance anxiety.

Founded in 2010, the Garland, Texas-based ChamberWorks was created by professional violist Marcus Pyle, an alumnus of Juilliard and the Royal Academy of Music in London. Throughout the year, the ChamberWorks Youth Orchestra meets on Saturdays and performs three concerts per season. After the concert at SMU, the Youth Orchestra will tour Boston where they will perform a concert benefiting the Harvard Homeless Shelter. In the past, the Youth Orchestra has toured London (2016) and New York City (2014).

In addition to providing Caruth Auditorium for the group’s evening concert, Meadows is also opening its classroom spaces to ChamberWorks for the day. In the hours leading up to the 7 p.m. performance, the Youth Orchestra will attend ChamberWorks-led classes such as Introduction to Conducting, Hooked on ’Tronics, Sight and Sound, and Jazz Improvisation, as well as sessions covering chamber studio work, music theory, music history and chamber orchestra performance. Meadows will also host a pre-concert reception for the musicians and their parents.

Community partnership

Helping foster music and arts education for the community is one way that SMU Meadows contributes to the arts both locally and nationally.

“I’m delighted that the Meadows School can host ChamberWorks for a day this summer, and I look forward to more in the future,” says Sam Holland, dean of the Meadows School. “Marcus Pyle and his talented team are accomplishing what many thought was impossible: building a participatory classical chamber music program for underserved, ethnically diverse students in North Texas. I’m impressed at the quality, breadth and depth of the ChamberWorks curriculum.

“At Meadows, we believe in the life-changing impact that art-making has on the life of every human being. ChamberWorks is putting that belief into practice. It’s a natural and very fruitful community partnership.”

Meadows’ involvement in the Institute started July 9, the first day of the two-week program, with a kickoff concert and interactive performance by the Julius Quartet, SMU Meadows 2017-19 Peak Fellowship Ensemble-in-Residence. As part of a teaching exercise, the quartet also had the students coach the quartet members as a way of teaching chamber music techniques such as balance, blending, score reading and more.

The invitation to ChamberWorks was extended by SMU Meadows’ Ignite/Arts Dallas, a program launched by the Meadows School to foster projects that integrate the arts and community engagement in the broader SMU campus, the city of Dallas and the arts field at large. Led by Clyde Valentín, Ignite/Arts Dallas aims to engage the Meadows School in deep relationships with the Dallas community, using the arts to foster connections between diverse groups, and to introduce its students to the arts’ critical role in social engagement.

Read more about ChamberWorks, Ignite/Arts Dallas and SMU Meadows Division of Music.

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