Written by Melinda Steffy   
Published on Wednesday, 14 June 2017 00:00


We've had an inspiring year here at LiveConnections. 4600 participants in our educational programs, 5 commissions of new concert music, more than 45 tremendously talented artists. Music spanning classical, jazz, Afro-Cuban, Guinean, Brazilian, electronica, rock, folk, blues, spirituals, samba, tango and so much more. Critically acclaimed concerts, interactive educational performances, hands-on residencies and workshops. Young people writing poetry, playing in percussion ensembles, trying capoeira, tracing the evolution of musical styles, learning the building blocks of music, finding their own voices.

Take a look at our 2016-2017 year in review:



Special guests Lizanne Knott, Ben Arnold, John Flynn, Lauren Hart & Jim Boggia performed at our annual gala, the Big Hurrah.


Radio host Helen Leicht received the 2016 Connector Award from LiveConnections' founding director David Bradley, executive director Melinda Steffy and president & co-founder Hal Real.


In our first LiveConnections Presents concert of the season, Benito Meza, Bridget Kibbey & Samuel Torres performed new music written by composers who immigrated to the U.S. from South America.



Kwasi Burgee introduced elementary students to the talking drum in our "World of Percussion" Bridge Session.



Jakub Ciupinski performed the world premiere of "Three Canons" for hacked theremins and string quintet (with Sybarite5), commissioned by LiveConnections.



Rebecca Harris, Joseph Conyers and Andrew Lipke discussed melody, bass and harmony in "The Building Blocks of Music" Bridge Session.


Bridge Session participants were always engaged and inspired.



Teaching artist Luke Carlos O'Reilly and executive director Melinda Steffy talked about our educational programs on NBC10. [watch]


Harlem Quartet joined us for a collaborative concert featuring music by Mozart and local Cuban percussionist Arturo Stable.


Arturo Stable & the Harlem Quartet also presented two Bridge Sessions for 235 young people from Philadelphia public schools.



Adults with cognitive disabilities tried out percussion instruments at a Bridge Session presented in collaboration with Art-Reach.


Lela Aisha Jones led students at Freire Charter Middle School in a residency exploring how movement and music play a role in social justice activism.



Philadelphia poet laureate Yolanda Wisher (right) coached students at Hill-Freedman World Academy on performing their original poetry, in collaboration with music teacher Zeke Thurman (back) and his music technology program.


John Patitucci and the Daedalus Quartet performed the world premiere of "Paintings in the Now," commissioned by LiveConnections.



Our 2017 Kids Count Campaign raised more than $47,000 to support our educational programs. Thanks to everyone who contributed! [donate]



Our final concert of the season, featuring Elizabeth Zharoff and Xavier Foley collaborating on video game music, got lots of great press. [check it out here, here and here]

See you next season!


Melinda Steffy, Executive Director




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