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OrchKids at the Library of Congress

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The following is a guest post by Anne McLean of the Music Division.

OrchKids at the Library of Congress
Saturday, April 7, 2018    2:00 pm
Thomas Jefferson Building, 1st and Independence, S.E.

Talented young musicians from the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s impressive OrchKids program perform a special free, family-friendly concert at the Library of Congress Coolidge Auditorium on Saturday, April 7. OrchKids will field a total of 55 middle and high school players at the Library that day, including a string ensemble and brass and bucket bands. The students are featured participants in the “LOC Spring Fling,” a pop-up exhibition exploring the sights, sounds and smells of the spring season through treasures from the Library’s vast collections.

Free tickets for the OrchKids concert are available through the Concerts from the Library of Congress website. Patrons can also obtain tickets at the door on the day of the event. Patrons of all ages are welcome.

Leonard Bernstein is a major focus for the afternoon, following a January OrchKids field trip to explore the Library’s 400,000-item Leonard Bernstein collection. The Music Division’s Mark Horowitz, curator for the collection, created a display of manuscripts and photographs, as well as report cards, notebooks and school essays from Bernstein’s teenage years. Also on view were moving letters to the composer from figures like Martin Luther King, Jr., Jackie Kennedy and Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Music Director and OrchKids Founding Director Marin Alsop, a Bernstein student and protégé. Encountering these items sparked an enthusiastic joint effort to create a new work reflecting Bernstein’s legacy, to be premiered at the Library on Saturday afternoon.

OrchKids is a year-round, during and after school, music program designed to create social change and nurture promising futures for youth in Baltimore City neighborhoods. Under Marin Alsop’s artistic leadership and direction, OrchKids is the cornerstone of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s community engagement efforts across the city. The program was founded in 2008 with 30 students at one elementary school through seed funding from Marin Alsop and Founding Donors Rheda Becker and Robert E. Meyerhoff. OrchKids now works with seven public schools in Baltimore City, serving over 1,300 children from Pre-K through 11th grade.

The OrchKids concert launches a special five-event celebration of the Bernstein Centennial at the Library of Congress. All events below require tickets, available free of charge. Please visit our website for further information about tickets and programs.


The Library’s vast Leonard Bernstein Collection provides the world’s best vantage point to contemplate the career of this extraordinary man: composer, conductor, pianist, educator, and humanitarian.

Saturday, May 12, 12 pm | Mary Pickford Theater, James Madison Building
FILM SCREENING: Bernstein conducts Mahler and Liszt

Tuesday, May 15, 7 pm | Montpelier Room, James Madison Building
LECTURE: “Bernstein Conducting Himself” with Daniel Callahan, PhD, Boston College

Thursday, May 17, 7 pm | Mary Pickford Theater, James Madison Building
FILM SCREENING: On the Waterfront (1954) NR, 108 min.

Friday, May 18,  8 pm | Coolidge Auditorium, Thomas Jefferson Building
CONCERT: Michael Barrett, Music Director | Julia Bullock, soprano | Amy Owens, soprano | Martin Luther Clark, tenor  | Amanda Lynn Bottoms, mezzo soprano | Adrian Rosas, bass-baritone

Saturday, May 19,  11 am-5 pm | Montpelier Room, James Madison Building
Exploring the Library’s Leonard Bernstein Collection — A Marathon Day of Lectures, Displays and Performances. Patrons are welcome to come for all or part of this daylong event. Tickets will be available at the door.

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