DCYOP awarded $80,000 to expand programs to DCPS students!

The DC Youth Orchestra Program (DCYOP) is thrilled to announce that it has received an award of $80,000 to expand its programs to more DC Public School (DCPS) students. The gift was given by an anonymous foundation and will enable DCYOP to offer a series of after school intensive string orchestra programs at DCPS Title 1 elementary schools beginning this fall.

“We are extremely grateful for this support and are excited to share our plans with our friends and families in the upcoming months. I look forward to growing our partnership with DCPS and renewing our commitment to provide high quality music education to all of DC’s young people, regardless of background, socioeconomic status and ability.” – Elizabeth Schurgin, Executive Director

In celebration of this great news, we invite you to make a gift to increase its impact. Please consider helping us end our fiscal year on a high note before August 31st:

Musician of the Month of August: Ken Giles!

Congratulations to Ken Giles, DCYOP’s Musician of the Month of August!
Mr. Giles is one of DCYOP’s most popular violin teachers. A graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy, Swarthmore College, and Suzuki String Institute, Mr.Giles has been a teacher and parent with DCYOP since his children participated in the 1980s. 
“Mr. Giles truly embodies the spirit of the DC Youth Orchestra Program. He constantly strives to find great opportunities for his students and has inspired many young people to fall in love with the violin.” – Evan Solomon, DCYOP Program Director

Just this past May, Mr. Giles led a team of DCYOP intermediate violinists to play the Star Spangled Banner at the season opener for the Washington Mystics basketball game. They were very well received! Watch their performance here.

In addition to DCYOP, Mr. Giles teaches privately throughout the Washington metropolitan area. This past summer, he lead a violin camp that culminated in a free performance in Takoma Park. According to the Gazette, “Giles found a way to make sure everyone participate[d] as a team, even though they [had] different levels of knowledge and experience.” The event was a big success. Congratulations to Mr. Giles and all of his students for their performance (pictured below). 
In his free time, Mr. Giles sings with the D.C. Labor Chorus and performs with folk ensembles.

There’s still time to learn violin with Mr. Giles this fall. Sign up in one of his beginning violin classes while space is still available: click here

DCYOPalooza Community Master Class with NSO Oboist Jamie Roberts

On Saturday, September 6th, as part of our free musical event DCYOPalooza, we will hold masterclasses taught by musicians from the National Symphony Orchestra. These masterclasses take place at 11:00 am and 1:00 pm and everyone is invited to participate! 

A master class is a learning opportunity for musicians to take a mini-lesson from an expert in front of an audience. The expert, also called a clinician or master teacher, gives positive feedback and practice suggestions for students to improve as musicians. Students learn more about their instrument, musicianship, auditioning and have the opportunity to ask questions. The master teacher’s advice will be helpful to everyone who attends including the audience! For musicians, there are few learning experiences as exciting as having the opportunity to perform or hear a friend play in a master class. 

Today we are featuring our Winds and Brass master teacher – Jamie Roberts! If you would like to sign up for a 10-minute slot to play for Ms. Roberts, email [email protected]. You do not need to be a current member of DCYOP to participate. All woodwinds and brass players with 3+ years experience are encouraged to play. 

Jamie Roberts, Chicago native, started playing the oboe at age 10. Jamie holds a M.M. in Oboe Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music and a B.M. from Indiana University, and a Professional Studies Certificate from the Colburn Conservatory. She has studied with John Ferrillo, Anne Gabriele, Linda Strommen, and Allan Vogel. Jamie was Principal Oboe of the Portland Opera Orchestra from 2007 to 2011, and has also performed with the Oregon Symphony, San Diego Symphony, and Spokane Symphony. She was Principal Oboe of the 2006 New York String Orchestra Seminar at Carnegie Hall. Jamie has spent her summers at festivals, including the Music Academy of the West, and the Aspen Music Festival. She joined the National Symphony Orchestra as Assistant Principal Oboe in September 2011. Jamie is also one of the founding members of LeDroit Chamber Players,  a community chamber music organization based in Washington DC.