Karen Mari is CYSO’s Community & Family Engagement Coordinator. This spring, as part of our Community Engagement Programs, Karen led our Ambassadors groups as they crisscrossed Chicago performing in-school concerts across the city.
CYSO Ambassadors are Chamber Music and Jazz Orchestra combo groups that perform on-site concerts at CPS schools for hundreds of young people each year. This January and February, our Ambassadors groups crisscrossed the city with their performances. By the end of the Ambassadors’ “season,” students had visited 15 schools across the city and performed for more than 2,700 young people.
The string, wind, brass, and jazz Ambassadors groups are selected from the CYSO Chamber Music and Jazz programs. As part of the program, students volunteer their time to create, rehearse, and perform these interactive educational concerts. In addition to missing a day of school (and getting a free lunch!), the Ambassadors enjoyed giving inspiring performances in gyms, auditoriums, and cafeterias for the next generation of young musicians and music lovers.
From our travels over the past two months, the string Ambassadors won the award for largest audience when they played for 450 students at Ogden International Elementary School. Our brass Ambassadors traveled the longest distance to play at Gallistel Language Academy and Haley Elementary on the south-east side—40 miles round trip!
Thank you to the FourTune String Quartet, Fantastique Five Wind Quartet, Tubadours Tuba Quartet, and CYSO Jazz Ambassadors Combo for their hard work and exceptional performances!