$1.8 million plan to ‘increase diversity in US orchestras’main
‘Holistic and personalised support?’ Could be too little, too late.
Here’s the press release:
NEW YORK (April 18, 2018) — Three national organizations – The Sphinx Organization, New World Symphony, and the League of American Orchestras – have partnered to create the National Alliance for Audition Support (NAAS), a field-wide initiative with the long-term goal of increasing diversity in American orchestras.
Supported by a four-year, $1.8 million grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, along with additional financial and programmatic contributions from America’s orchestras, the Alliance will offer a holistic and personalized array of support to Black and Latinx musicians to develop their audition skills, increase their participation in auditions, and ultimately, increase their representation in orchestras.
“This is a critical time for all of us to act with renewed commitment and drive to help our orchestras to be more reflective of their communities and to represent perspectives and talents from Black and Latinx musicians,” said Sphinx President and Artistic Director Afa S. Dworkin. “We are honored to join forces with key industry leaders, humbled to receive and incorporate extensive insight directly from artists, and incredibly grateful to The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for prioritizing this vital work.”
“New World Symphony envisions a strong and secure future for classical music,” said NWS President Howard Herring. “We believe that is possible only if the orchestras of this country are representative of their communities. New World is committed to diversifying its Fellowship with the support of our alumni, who have won positions in orchestras and ensembles around the world. We are honored now to partner with Sphinx and the League in forming this new Alliance dedicated to making equity and inclusion part of the future for American orchestras.”
“This unprecedented collective action on the part of America’s orchestras addresses some of the main barriers to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in orchestras,” said Jesse Rosen, President and CEO, League of American Orchestras. “The unique and coordinated network of support is informed by research and extensive discussions with many Black and Latinx musicians as well as many other individuals in orchestras and higher education. We are especially grateful to the American Federation of Musicians, the International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians, and the Regional Orchestra Players Association for their participation and support.”