About the Program

Institution to welcome Diversity Fellows through new Cincinnati partnerships

Chautauqua Institution is pleased to announce the establishment of the Chautauqua Diversity Fellows Program, an expansion of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music’s (CCM) groundbreaking Diversity Fellowship Program for pre-professional underrepresented musicians. Through the new partnership, up to five fellows will be selected each year from within the Cincinnati Diversity Fellowship Program to participate in an eight-week summer residency at Chautauqua, beginning with the 2018 season.

“Inclusiveness — of race, gender, sexuality, ideas — is the Chautauqua ideal. We aim to be a leading force in evolving the field of symphony orchestras by diversifying the makeup of the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra and investing in inclusion,” said Deborah Sunya Moore, vice president of performing and visual arts at Chautauqua Institution. “By making it a priority to help musicians from underrepresented communities early in their careers, the Institution hopes to be instrumental in their ability to compete for and win jobs in American orchestras. Diversity in the arts changes lives not only for the artist but also for audiences.”

Launched in 2015 with a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Cincinnati Diversity Fellowship Program is open to violin, viola, cello and double bass players from populations that are historically underrepresented in classical music. Fellows perform the equivalent of five weeks per season with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra while enrolled in a two-year Master of Music or Artist Diploma degree program at CCM. Each class of fellows is selected through a rigorous series of auditions by hundreds of graduate-level musicians for CCM faculty members.

As many as five Cincinnati Diversity Fellows will be selected annually to participate in the summer residency with the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra, with frequent performance opportunities in the Institution’s 4,400-seat Amphitheater. The fellows will be mentored by the orchestra’s professional musicians, who come to Chautauqua each summer from a variety of home ensembles around the world. In addition, fellows will mentor minority student musicians in Chautauqua’s Music School Festival Orchestra, and offer performances designed to engage the broader Chautauqua community. Chautauqua Diversity Fellows will be provided housing and receive a stipend to offset their expenses.

“The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and CCM are determined to advance diversity on orchestra stages and this new partnership will provide a significant boost to efforts both here and at the Chautauqua Institution,” said Jonathan Martin, president of the orchestra. “We are so pleased to now be working together with them in addition to CCM, on this important initiative.”

According to CCM Interim Dean bruce mcclung, “The Chautauqua Institution partnership provides the opportunity for our fellows to continue playing alongside and being mentored by professional musicians during the summer months, thereby enhancing the experience-based education that is at the heart of the Cincinnati Diversity Fellowship program.”