This spring, the Asheville Lyric Opera began a new education and outreach initiative that seeks to foster an appreciation for the power of vocal music in youth from our area. This series was connected to the company's fifteenth anniversary programming, profiling the regional identity of Western North Carolina through the arts. The ALO was proud to receive funds for this program from Grassroots Arts Program and Wells Fargo.
For years, the ALO has been an active part of the
arts experience provided to students in Buncombe County Schools and through
community organizations. In previous projects, students have participated in
productions or hosted performances of their own. Education projects in recent
years have featured diverse experiences presented directly to students. In 2013,
students were invited to attend a guest lecture and master class by internationally
acclaimed tenor, Lawrence Brownlee. This year, the project focused on
bringing hands-on experiences to students in school classrooms or assemblies,
as well as to meetings of community organizations.
These activities included listening to live singing
by an opera singer, participating in vocal exploratory exercises themselves,
examining the way styles of singing adapt over times and places, and discussing
the power of the human voice and its role in our communities.
In addition to these experiences with students, the
Asheville Lyric Opera is continually working to partner with classroom teachers
and youth leaders to identify ways in which arts organizations can work
together with schools and community groups in order to best serve the youth in
our area. Arts experiences for young people have proven benefits while
strengthening pride and community involvement. The ALO strives to ensure these
opportunities are offered to students of diverse backgrounds.
This project received support from the North
Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources, with
funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information about the education and
outreach programs of the Asheville Lyric Opera, or if you are a teacher or
leader of a community youth organization interested in becoming involved,
please visit ashevillelyric.org/outreach or contact firstname.lastname@example.org or