Street Symphony places social justice at the heart of music making by
creating authentic, powerful engagements between professional and emerging
artists and communities disenfranchised by homelessness and incarceration
in Los Angeles County. Street Symphony operates with the core principle
that all people deserve access to a creative and expressive life.
The purpose of Street Symphony programs is twofold: (1) to create platforms
for historically and presently oppressed communities to find and share their
artistic, human voices, and (2) to create the environment for professional
and emerging artists to move into vital, powerful roles as agents of cultural
change through community engagement.
Founded in 2011, Street Symphony has presented nearly 400 free, world-class
musical engagements for severely disenfranchised communities affected by
homelessness and incarceration in Los Angeles County.
Comprised of a grassroots community of over 70 world-class musicians, Street
Symphony ensembles present regular monthly programs at Skid Row shelters and
county jails. Since 2015, Street Symphony has presented a yearly performance
of The Messiah Project, a nationally acclaimed community performance of excerpts
of Handel’s Messiah at The Midnight Mission in Skid Row, featuring stories and
performances from people affected by and recovering from homelessness in LA County.
In 2017, supported by a generous grant from the S. Mark Taper Foundation,
Street Symphony launched the Daniel Chaney Teaching Artist Program, pairing
professional artists with members of the homeless community in an effort to
amplify the voices and artistry of the Skid Row community.
Teaching Artist Program
The Daniel Chaney Teaching Artist Program is a new initiative
of Street Symphony, dedicated to exploring “Citizen-Artistry”
in Los Angeles and beyond. Daniel Chaney Teaching Artist Program
Fellows receive a year of intensive instruction musical performance
and the intersection of arts and social justice. Fellows can be
members of the Skid Row community, as well as emerging artists
graduating from university and conservatory.