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Adult a cappella summer workshop
Summer vocal harmony workshop for adults

Education

The Western Wind was formed in 1969 with the mission of spreading the special beauty and joy of a cappella music. After establishing an international reputation through their stirring renditions of Early American and Renaissance music, as well as new music written for the ensemble by living composers, the group expanded its scope through an arts education program in the New York City public schools.

Since 1981, The Western Wind has affected the lives of thousands of kids, many of whom would otherwise have no other exposure to musical instruction. This program is a model for how the professional arts community in New York City and other urban areas can use its resources and talents to provide public school children with arts education of the highest caliber. Through its use of a multi-cultural vocal music repertoire, this program helps build bridges between the city’s many ethnic groups and teaches basic musical skills which enhance overall learning.

We hope you’ll consider supporting The Western Wind Goes To School by making a tax-deductible contribution.

Kids in Western Wind Arts In Education program
at Talent Unlimited High School

How is the program funded?

Funding for the Western Wind Arts-in-Education program has come from The New York State Council on the Arts, The National Endowment for The Arts, The New York Foundation for the Arts, The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, Meet The Composer, Consolidated Edison, District 21, District #3, PS 75 and PS 163 PTAs, The C. M. Paul Foundation, The New York Community Trust, The Morgan Stanley Foundation, the Edith C. Blum Foundation, The Chase Manhattan Foundation, the Ann Pinkerton Foundation, the Michael Tuch Foundation and private contributions.

What are some of the successes of the program?

This innovative program has been a major success and has drawn praise from educators and the press. Students from the Mark Twain choral program developed to a point where they have performed with the Western Wind on major New York concert venues and received critical acclaim from the New York Times. These students have also won awards at prestigious choral competitions, and many have gone on to specialized high schools and to conservatories. Building on the success of the Mark Twain Program, in 1991–2 The Western Wind inaugurated a program for elementary school students in District #3 with the support of the Morgan Stanley Foundation. More recently, the ensemble is in residence at two New York City high schools -- Talent Unlimited High School in Manhattan and Edward R. Murrow High School in Brooklyn -- as well as the Washington Heights Chorus School in Manhattan (an after-school program for kids in grades 3-7) and P.S. 229 Dyker and elementary and middle school in Brooklyn,

Other educational affiliations

In 1989 and 1990 The Western Wind was the vocal music constituent for the arts in education program of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Over the years, the Ensemble has also worked with the Lincoln Center Institute, Arts Exposure, the New York Philharmonic Max Program, the Harlem School for the Arts and the Nassau and Suffolk County BOCES. 

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