Since 1974, Voices of Change has consistently earned national and international recognition and awards both for the high caliber of its performances and for its diverse repertoire. In early 1999, Voices was nominated as a finalist for the prestigious Grammy Award for Best Performance by a Small Classical Ensemble. The CD, Voces Americanas, features works of five living composers of Hispanic descent. This is a first nomination for any Dallas/Fort Worth area chamber music ensemble. Voices of Change has also been awarded the annual ASCAP Award for Adventuresome Programming five times.
Voices of Change has presented over 60 world premieres (more than 25 of which were commissioned by the ensemble), performed music by over 300 composers, and made numerous recordings, including 5 CDs. The group most recently performed and recorded the chamber music of David Dzubay, thanks to a generous grant from the Copland Foundation.
In December, 2002, Voices of Change was awarded a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to commission and perform a multi- media performance piece of The Dot and The Line. For the project, Robert Xavier Rodriguez will compose a 15-20 minute work for narrator, chamber ensemble and optional slides and/or dancers, based on Norton Juster’s classic 1963 children’s book, The Dot and the Line. Work continues behind the scenes to develop this exciting multimedia production.
NEA Grant funds Four School Programs
Press Release August 1, 2008 Dallas, TX
Voices of Change new music ensemble is pleased to announce it is the recipient of a 2008 National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) grant under the American Masterpieces Chamber Music initiative. Voices of Change (VOC) has received $5,000 for a project called “American Music Live for Tomorrow’s Audiences.” The project will fund presentation of four pieces performed during the subscription concert season at eight area schools. The funding will cover the costs of bringing composers and musicians into schools for a performance of a composition, and to talk to the students about new music and the process of composition.
VOC Artistic Director Joe Illick says, “We are very excited to be recognized by the NEA for our work in the schools. The residencies will feature performances by outstanding musicians and will also provide stimulating discussion for the students. We hope that the students will become music lovers who will be our future audiences.”
Each school program will cost over $1,000 each, so Voices of Change is thrilled to be able to provide this free of charge to eight selected schools in the Greater Dallas area. These programs will be in addition to the current ArtsPartners programs, which are paid for by DISD schools that have been given arts allowances by ArtsPartners. The grant will enable VOC to expand its education programming more than ever before.
In October, Dr. Robert Frank will bring his String Quartet No. 2 (…para mis amigos Mexicanos…) to two DISD schools. In November, Native American History month, VOC will perform American Indian composer Jerod Tate’s Spirit Chief Names the Animal People (for woodwind trio, piano and narrator) at two schools. Tate says the piece is a Native version of Peter and the Wolf. In February, Anne Strickland’s new piece commissioned by VOC, Invisible Ink (working title), will be featured. And in April, Joe Illick will present Stephen Hartke’s Oh, Them Rats is Mean in My Kitchen for 2 violins.
Voices of Change is currently in the process of identifying and selecting area schools to host the performance/discussion presentations. NEA grant programs are all matching grants, so VOC is seeking to raise $5,000 for the project.
In Dallas Top Ten
Voices of Change’s January 7, 2006 concert was included in the Top Ten Classical Performances for the 2006-2007 Season.
December 21, 2007, Scott Cantrell, Reviewer, Dallas Morning News
“Two one-act, one-woman mini-operas got riveting performances from sopranos Lauren Flanigan (in Thomas Pasatieri’s Before Breakfast) and Gina Browning (in Poulenc’s La voix humaine). Joe Illick accompanied so deftly on piano that one hardly missed the original orchestrations.”
Finalist for the prestigious Grammy Award for Best Performance by a Small Classical Ensemble in 1999. The CD, Voces Americanas, features works of five living composers of Hispanic descent. The Grammy nomination is a first for any Dallas/Fort Worth area chamber music ensemble.
Five ASCAP Awards for Adventuresome Programming