2018 CYSO alum Lucy Mangalapalli was recently named to the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events’ (DCASE) 2018 Rising Star Honor Roll, recognizing her as one of Chicago’s most accomplished young creatives. Lucy was nominated by CYSO in recognition of her work as a young musician and exemplary community member. Madalyne Tregellas Maxwell, CYSO Director of Operations, said that “Lucy’s openness and service to others” made her a great candidate for the Rising Start Honor Roll.
Lucy began playing the clarinet when she was nine and was a member of CYSO for three years. She began in Concert Orchestra and then moved to Philharmonic Orchestra for her junior and senior year of high school. In addition, she participated in a woodwind quintet through CYSO Chamber Music.
In addition to her participating at CYSO, Lucy was active in other clubs and extra curriculars. She co-led the Mixed Race Students Club at her high school and helped organize a fundraiser and supply drive for I-Project, an initiative focused on activism through the arts. The club created student-designed stickers to support the cause.
Lucy believes strongly in the arts as a way to expand young people’s world view. She said that for her personally, music is “always there for me regardless of whether I receive a bad grade, get into an argument with a friend, or encounter any other challenges.” She believes that all young people deserve access to the outlet that the arts have to offer. “I want to show younger people how music and other art forms tell a story and pull you into a different work in which you have complete freedom.”
Lucy has been inspired by the creativity and endless opportunities that Chicago has to engage in making the community better. “There is always some sort of rally, protest, conference, or local-level meeting to improve the relationship between the police and our communities, rights for the LGBT community, protections for immigrants, and many other important causes.”
As part of her Rising Star Honor Roll application, Lucy was asked what she would change in order to make Chicago a more creative city. She said that “we have the potential to help those who are disadvantaged, including those who lack access to arts programs and exposure to the arts. For Chicago to become a more creative city, I would change the fact that public schools in the South and West Side neighborhoods do not often have music, visual, or performing arts programs that satisfy their students creative hearts. Artistic talent exists everywhere in Chicago, and every creative mind deserves the resources and inspirations for that talent to shine – regardless of their zip code, race, religion, or any other identity.”
“They say that music builds bridges. I hope that being accepted to the Honor Roll will inspire other young artists like me to build the bridges they need to continue their artistic journey and pursue their creative passions, despite whatever may stand in their way.”
Lucy gradated from Walter Payton College Prep this spring was was awarded a full 4-year musical scholarship to Emory University. She plans to study Biology and Music with a minor in Sociology. She and the rest of the 2018 Rising Star Honor Roll members, nominated by arts organizations from across Chicago, will be honored at a special reception at the Chicago Cultural Center on August 8th.