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Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra announced as a grant recipient from the National Endowment for the Arts to commission work celebrating New Orleans tricentennial

National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu has approved more than $82 million to fund local arts projects across the country in the NEA’s second major funding announcement for fiscal year 2017. Included in this announcement is an Art Works award of $15,000 to the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra to commission renowned composer and banjoist Béla Fleck to write a composition celebrating the New Orleans tricentennial.  The NEA received 1,728 Art Works applications and will make 1,029 grants ranging from $10,000 to $100,000.
 
“The arts reflect the vision, energy, and talent of America’s artists and arts organizations,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to support organizations such as the LPO, in serving their communities by providing excellent and accessible arts experiences.”
 
In 2018, the City of New Orleans will be celebrating its tricentennial.
 
“This anniversary year will be a time to reflect on the rich history of our region and how it informs the way we build toward the future,” said James William Boyd, LPO CEO. “Louisiana is known throughout the world as a mecca for music, from Cajun and country to jazz, ragtime, and R&B, but the full extent of the state’s musical legacy is often overlooked. As such, the celebrations centered around the tricentennial present an opportunity to showcase a new composition that brings together the New Orleans jazz tradition with contemporary orchestral repertoire.”
 
In celebration of these musical traditions and the landmark anniversary, the LPO is commissioning a new concerto for banjo and orchestra by the virtuosic and critically acclaimed banjoist and composer Béla Fleck. The LPO will present three performances of the commissioned concerto: twice in New Orleans and once in Covington, LA. The commissioned work will be the third concerto composed by Fleck for banjo and orchestra and was inspired following his 2015 appearances with the LPO, when he performed his works Imposter: A Concerto for Banjo and Orchestra and the quintet “Night Flight Over Water” to the delight of local audiences.
 
The Fleck commission will be part of the LPO’s 2017-2018 season of program offerings. In addition, the LPO is pleased to announce that we will be presented by Carnegie Hall in New York City as part of its 2017- 2018 season celebrating composer-in-residence Philip Glass.

“It’s such an honor to receive an invitation from Carnegie Hall to perform as part of their season-long celebration of Philip Glass,” said LPO Chief Executive Officer, James William Boyd. “It’s a testament to what the LPO musicians and Carlos have built in New Orleans in terms of creative programming and artistic quality.”

LPO Music Director Carlos Miguel Prieto, LPO musicians, and staff organized an application to Carnegie Hall in 2015 requesting consideration to perform as part of the Glass Orchestra Project. After reviewing proposals from orchestras across the United States, the LPO and Pacific Symphony (California) were the only two selected to participate.

For more information, contact Sean Snyder, Director of Marketing and Communications, at sean.snyder@lpomusic.com or call 504-523-6530, ext. 201.

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About the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra
The Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra (LPO) is dedicated to maintaining live orchestral music and a full-scale symphonic orchestra as an integral part of the cultural and educational life of the New Orleans area, the entire state of Louisiana, and the Gulf South region. Formed in 1991, the LPO is the oldest full-time musician-governed and collaboratively-operated orchestra in the United States.
 
The LPO offers a full 36-week season with more than 120 performances, including classics, light classics, pops, education, family, park and community engagement concerts in New Orleans and across multi-parish areas. In addition, The LPO collaborates with and provides orchestral support for other cultural and performing arts organizations, including New Orleans Opera Association, New Orleans Vocal Arts Chorale, New Orleans Ballet Association and Delta Festival Ballet.

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