“Julian has taught me more in one year than I will learn in four years of high school music classes. Being given the opportunity to perform with world-class conductors such as Julian and Eschenbach along with the National Symphony Orchestra…has really inspired me to pursue music as a career…
My experience with JWC has been life changing.” –Student, JWC Member
It’s hard to describe what it’s like to stand shoulder to shoulder with 200 singers in an incredible concert hall, singing full force, but the young students in our Junior Washington Chorus program experience this to the fullest. Formed three years ago, this program joins our other long-standing education programs in the essential part of TWC’s mission to “nurture the next generation of choral singers.”
Junior Washington Chorus members don’t simply join the chorus as full performing members for the fall semester, they take personalized music history, theory, and technique classes with Music Director Julian Wachner, encouraging each student’s pursuit of musical excellence. This training occurs before the regularly scheduled Chorus rehearsals and encourages the study of music theory and aural skills in relation to the selected repertoire for the season. By the time they join the regular rehearsal, these young students often know more about the history and theory of the score than their older Chorus “buddies” – in fact, Julian often calls on these students to explain parts of the score to the full Chorus.
Designed to provide 15-20 high-school aged students with choral opportunities beyond the scope of their limited or diminished school programs, JWC is open to any student eager to progress in these areas, regardless of background or income. For Give to the Max Day, we are focused on raising critical funds to keep this program vibrant and available to all young singers.
One young student recently remarked: “Maestro Wachner is always willing to share his knowledge and experience to help me grow in my musical abilities. His energy and dynamic approach keep rehearsals productive, but also fun. I look forward to singing for many years to come.”
We are also continuing to build our other outreach and education programs. Now in our 51st Season, we have developed many wonderful relationships and partnerships with other organizations in our community to make our music available to many who couldn’t otherwise experience the beauty and power of choral music.
The Outreach Singers, a subset of the full Chorus, typically perform 25 free concerts each year at senior residences, homeless shelters, hospices, and other venues for underserved communities in the metropolitan DC area, reaching over 3,000 listeners.
“The Outreach Singers program is a strong resource for Miriam’s Kitchen and…has proven effective in building trusting relationships with guests and understanding their needs through art. It is so important that programs like the Outreach Singers operate in our community as they help provide education, enjoyment and healing.” –Scott Schenkelberg, Executive Director, Miriam’s Kitchen, 2010
For the past 19 years, the Side by Side program has selected an outstanding local high school choir or choirs to partner with The Washington Chorus for the unique experience of rehearsing and performing alongside a world-class symphonic chorus for one concert program each winter. The high school choirs reflect a mix of ethnicity, a wide range of socio-economic backgrounds, and a diverse spectrum of artistic experience.
“This program showed me what could be accomplished when you set yourself a goal and work for it. Not only was this my first time performing, but my first time in the music halls. It was one of the most incredible experiences of my life, and it made me feel so accomplished to be on that great stage.” –Kevin, Side by Side Student
And Tickets for Teens offers 1,000 free tickets annually to local youth for TWC concerts at the Kennedy Center and Music Center at Strathmore.
Help us keep these programs vibrant and powerful by making a small donation. So many others today are supporting the strong organizations that make our community great; please consider bolstering these programs that help us to reach thousands of our neighbors, children, friends, and students each year. Thank you for your support!