LiveConnections' Bridge Sessions and in-school residencies provide interactive educational opportunities for youth from city schools & people with disabilities.


Our LiveConnections Presents concert series features collaborative concerts designed for adventurous music-lovers.


We prioritize accessibility for people with disabilities through Bridge Sessions, workshops & live webcasts.

Written by Melinda Steffy   
Published on Tuesday, 18 August 2015 10:30


LiveConnections honors Liz Dow of LEADERSHIP Philadelphia with its “Connector Award,” to be presented at LiveConnections’ annual Big Hurrah gala on October 6

“The feel-good event of the year!” —Michaela Majoun, former WXPN radio host

LiveConnections Big Hurrah

WHAT: annual gala featuring collaborative performances by local artists, as well as student showcases and the first Connector Award; proceeds benefit LiveConnections’ educational & community-building music-making
WHEN: Tuesday, October 6, 2015, from 5:30-8:30pm
VENUE: World Cafe Live - Philadelphia (3025 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA)

Big HurrahPHILADELPHIA - Innovative music nonprofit LiveConnections announces its third annual fundraising gala, the Big Hurrah, held on October 6 at World Cafe Live. Called “the feel-good event of the year” by former WXPN radio host Michaela Majoun, the Big Hurrah features the best of LiveConnections artists collaborating across musical styles and genres, and also showcases student work from LiveConnections’ partner schools.

This year’s event features performances by Jakub Ciupiński, theremin; Yumi Kendall, cello (Philadelphia Orchestra); Kristin Lee, violin (Astral Artists); Josh Robinson, percussion (Alô Brasil); Alex Shaw, percussion (Alô Brasil); and Jacob Winterstein, spoken word; among others.

In addition, LiveConnections is proud to launch its new “Connector Award,” which recognizes achievements in creating collaborations and fueling innovations. Growing out of LiveConnections’ vision to create relationships and partnerships through collaborative music-making, the Connector Award honors an individual who shares that vision, and who works to build bridges, create collaborations and fuel innovation through the power of relationship.

At this year’s Big Hurrah, the first Connector Award will be given to Liz Dow, whose work with LEADERSHIP Philadelphia exemplifies this spirit. LEADERSHIP Philadelphia mobilizes and connects the talent of the private sector to serve the community, and Dow has inspired countless emerging and established leaders to take their work, and the Philadelphia region, to new levels. Through her personal leadership on boards in the arts, social services and education, Dow has modeled cross-sector commitment and demonstrated how to bring diverse people together for the common good.

LiveConnections has benefitted from Dow’s connecting work first-hand. Two LiveConnections board members have been recognized by LEADERSHIP Philadelphia as “Connectors,” and several additional board and staff members are graduates of the LEADERSHIP Philadelphia core and executive programs.

For more information about the Big Hurrah, visit

[Image: Jaci Downs Photography]

Liz DowABOUT LIZ DOW: Liz Dow, CEO, has run LEADERSHIP Philadelphia for 20 years. Prior to this appointment, Liz served as senior vice president with FirstUSA (now JPMorgan). She earned an MBA from the Wharton School and an MA from Cornell University. She served as a Wharton Public Policy Fellow at the White House. She currently serves on the boards of the local Knight Foundation and the High School for the Creative and Performing Arts Foundation. She chaired the Mural Arts board and has served on the boards of Girard College, Widener University, MEDecision, Christ Church Preservation Trust, the Please Touch Museum, the Philadelphia History Museum and the Philadelphia Zoo. She is a graduate of the FBI Citizen’s Academy. Liz was profiled on the cover of the SmartCEO magazine issue on “Leaders We Admire.” She was given the Mayor’s Citizenship Award, named by the Philadelphia Business Journal as one of the 23 Most Influential Business People in the city, named by the Eagles as one of “The 75 Greatest Living Philadelphians,” and named to Fast Company’s list of “15 People Who Are Taking Networking to a New Level.” Liz was recently named to the Philadelphia Police Community Oversight Board. She is the author of the book “Six Degrees of Connection” and writes a blog on wonder at work for the Huffington Post.

ABOUT LIVECONNECTIONS: LiveConnections inspires learning and builds community through collaborative music-making. Since its founding in 2008, LiveConnections has re-imagined the landscape of live music and music education through unique collaborations that join artists from different genres to highlight how music crosses cultures and creates bridges of understanding. Programs reach people who would not normally experience this kind of music—such as youth from urban schools and people with disabilities—as well as musically adventurous audiences.

LiveConnections has reached more than 24,000 participants—both youth from city schools and individuals with disabilities—through its interactive Bridge Sessions at partner venue World Cafe Live. The sessions connect participants with some of the best musicians across the region, allowing participants to explore diverse musical cultures and express their own creativity. Almost all of these participants are from the city of Philadelphia, and 99% participate for free. As arts education has been disappearing from city school budgets, and as people with disabilities face barriers to accessing the arts, LiveConnections helps fill the gap.

The LiveConnections Presents concert series (formerly ClassicAlive) features six concerts each year highlighting unique artistic collaborations and adventurous music. Called “breathtaking” by the Philadelphia Weekly, the performances give musicians the chance to create distinctive, boundary-crossing music, frequently sparking new commissions and world premieres. LiveConnections’ partner venue World Cafe Live provides a relaxed atmosphere for audiences to experience cutting-edge compositions.

In addition, through its LiveStudio video initiative for underserved audiences, concerts and select Bridge Sessions are streamed live to reach people who wouldn’t otherwise be able to travel to the venue.


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