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International Beethoven Project announces educational partnerships,
artistic programming headquarters in Chicago’s Hyde Park

Kickoff: December 17th, 2014

CHICAGO (November 20, 2014)—The International Beethoven Project (IBP), led by President and Artistic Director George Lepauw, announced today that it will partner with the Chicago Academy of Music (CAM) and the Chicago Metamorphosis Orchestra Project (ChiMOP), to launch and develop a music education program in Hyde Park for the benefit of residents of Chicago’s South Side, with a particular focus on reaching underserved communities from Bronzeville, Woodlawn, Back of Yards, South Shore and Englewood. An orchestra program and private music lessons will be held at University Church, 5655 South University Avenue in Hyde Park, which will also become IBP’s Artistic Programming headquarters, with a schedule of events throughout the year as part of its ongoing UnFestival series.

“Education has always been a central tenet of our mission, and with the increasing difficulty of access to music education for many of Chicago’s children, we decided it was time to play our part in reaching out to communities in need,” says Lepauw. “With partnerships that allow us to leverage the specific strengths of our organizations, we will be able to reach hundreds of kids and their families within the next year.”

The music program is designed to be free to children in need. Funding for the program, which will come from donors, local businesses, and with additional support from a select number of tuition-paying families who are admitted to the program, will be managed by the Chicago Academy of Music. Music lessons will be run by the ChiMOP team using their tested methods. Artistic programming, including free concerts for the students, their families, and the community at large, along with special masterclass opportunities and guest lectures on musical topics, will be run by IBP, to provide exposure to the art and history of music.

Additionally to music education for children, an adult orchestra program will be added for local amateurs. “Having grown up on the South Side and seen first hand the harm done by the disappearance of quality music programs in Chicago’s schools, I recognized the huge need for music education in our communities, and as a concerned parent and citizen, decided that I had to take action,” says Michael Scott Carter, Founder and Executive Director of the Chicago Academy of Music. “But we also want to engage the community at large, which is why we will offer adult programs in conjunction with our children’s programs, which we believe will reinforce music-making appreciation for all families involved.”

The Chicago Metamorphosis Orchestra Project, currently active on Chicago’s West side, will bring its music for social change programming to Hyde Park in an effort to provide great music education opportunities while strengthening the bonds of community. “Over the past year, we have established two west side programs of which we are extremely proud. We are excited at the opportunity to expand our impact to South Side communities,” says Thomas Madeja, President and Artistic Director of ChiMOP.

The Project will be introduced to the public on Wednesday, December 17th, as part of IBP’s series of events to celebrate Beethoven Birthday Month 2014, with a celebratory day of free music performances open to the public (noon to 8pm), along with a presentation by the directors at 6pm on the specifics of the program which are set to begin in early 2015. Information on registration for students and sponsorship opportunities for concerned citizens and businesses will be available. Additionally, donations of unused instruments will be accepted.

A press release will follow November 24th with details of Beethoven Birthday Month 2014.

A ticketed celebration and fundraising event is scheduled for New Year’s Eve, which will take place at University Church. A separate press release will be sent with details.

The December 17th Educational Partnership Kickoff program will be made available in early December on our websites:

About George Lepauw: Named Chicagoan of the Year (2012) for Classical Music in the Chicago Tribune and listed in Chicago Magazine’s Classical Music “Power List” (2013), George represents the ideal 21st century musician, intensely focused on his art and wholly engaged with the world. “A prodigious pianist” (Chicago Tribune), George is extremely committed to the Chicago cultural scene. In 2009, he founded the International Beethoven Project, a non-profit organization focused on innovation in the arts and humanity’s potential in line with Beethoven’s own spirit; in 2011, he founded the annual Chicago-based Beethoven Festival, a radical happening that showcases the relationship between the creative arts, culture, and community.

About the International Beethoven Project (IBP): IBP, a Chicago-Based Non-Profit, inspired by the creativity, genius, and social idealism of Ludwig van Beethoven, came into existence when its founder, concert pianist George Lepauw, was asked by renowned Beethoven scholars to organize, and to perform, the World Premiere of Beethoven’s long-lost Piano Trio H47, in 2008-09. The worldwide broadcast of the historic Chicago concert led to a Billboard charting, and critically acclaimed, studio recording co-produced by IBP and Chicago’s Cedille Records, released at New York’s Lincoln Center in 2010. Seeing the potential to connect to new generations through the concept of Beethoven’s radical innovative spirit, George decided to take the initial momentum of the project and develop it into a full-fledged all-arts-inclusive multi-dimensional Beethoven Festival, inaugurated in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood in September 2011, titled “Man and Muse”. The second annual Beethoven Festival, “Revolution 2012”, was held in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood and the third annual Beethoven Festival, “LOVE 2013”, was held in the West Loop of Chicago primarily at the Merit School of Music, covering one hundred events in ten days. In 2014, IBP launched a season-long series entitled “UnFestival”, to activate private and public spaces around Chicago for the benefit of local communities.

About Michael Scott Carter: Entrepreneur, Behavioral Economist, Founder and Director of the Chicago Academy of Music. Carter also is a member of the United Nations Leading Group on Innovative Financing, and serves on the Advisory board for Illinois State Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka. Previously, Carter worked as the Chief Economist at the Chicago Urban League’s Entrepreneurship Center.

About the Chicago Academy of Music: THE CHICAGO ACADEMY OF MUSIC (CAM) is a nonprofit offering mostly free music education through multiple methods of instruction, and will be available mostly for children from a low and middle socioeconomic status (SES).“The mission of the Chicago Academy of Music is to transform the lives of young people by instilling positive values through affordable music education.” A main functionality of the Chicago Academy of Music is illustrated in our programs using Instruments of Transformation. Not only will students develop into proficient musicians, but their experience with their instrument, their instructor, and (in most cases) with their parent will directly impact areas of their lives outside of the music academy.

About Thomas Madeja: Thomas is an experienced performer, teaching artist, composer, and director. Beginning his career in Philadelphia where he soon was in high demand as a trumpeter and teaching artist, he saw the need for social action through music while working for The Philadelphia Orchestra’s School Partnership Program to provide music programming in underserved communities. Upon relocating to Chicago, he quickly joined the People’s Music School before leaving to start the Chicago Metamorphosis Orchestra Project (ChiMOP). ChiMOP was founded to address the growing need of music for social change programs in Chicago’s urban communities.

About the Chicago Metamorphosis Orchestra Project: Chicago Metamorphosis Orchestra Project (ChiMOP) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to affecting positive social change in underserved communities with limited access to the arts by providing a safe and fun environment for children to make music and pursue excellence together with peers and positive adult role models. ChiMOP offers community youth orchestra programming and instrumental music instruction in partnership with schools, churches, and community centers.