Nashville Symphony Awarded National Endowment for the Arts Grant

May 10, 2016

Funding will support performances and recording of John Harbison’s ‘Requiem’ in May 2017

Nashville, Tenn. (May 10, 2016) – The Nashville Symphony has been named the recipient of an Art Works grant from the National Endowment of the Arts, part of more than $82 million in nationwide funding for local arts projects and partnerships announced by the NEA this week.
The $25,000 grant will be used to support two performances and a live recording of American composer John Harbison’s Requiem by the Nashville Symphony and Chorus on May 12-13, 2017, at Schermerhorn Symphony Center. The recording is slated for future release on Naxos, the world’s leading distributor of orchestral music.
“John Harbison is one of our country’s leading contemporary composers, and these performances and recording of the Requiem are but the latest example of the Symphony’s long-standing commitment to the performance and promotion of American orchestral music,” said Alan D. Valentine, Nashville Symphony president and CEO. “We are enormously appreciative of the NEA’s support of this important project, which will help the Nashville Symphony share this composer’s profoundly moving work with people of every age and background throughout Middle Tennessee and beyond.”
“Completed shortly after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, this piece captures the very essence of Harbison’s unique talent, and we all felt that it needed to be experienced by the appreciative audience we have here in Nashville,” said Giancarlo Guerrero, Nashville Symphony music director. “The Requiem is the perfect fit for our stunning concert hall, and I am looking forward to the hearing the orchestra and chorus bring it to life next season.”
Prior to the performances, Harbison’s Requiem will be the centerpiece of a free choral music education initiative organized by the Nashville Symphony Chorus. Interim chorus director Tucker Biddlecombe will collaborate with Metro Nashville Public School (MNPS) choral directors to include Harbison’s music in their repertoire and instruction for the semester. Nashville Symphony Chorus members will also participate in select MNPS choir rehearsals, giving young singers the opportunity to rehearse alongside experienced performers, and MNPS choral ensembles will be invited to attend the May 11, 2017, dress rehearsal.
Harbison will travel to Nashville the week of the performances to assist the Symphony and Chorus in the rehearsal process and will also join Guerrero for free pre-concert lectures.
The National Endowment for the Arts is the federal agency that supports and funds the arts to give all Americans the opportunity to experience creativity and participate in the arts. The NEA’s Art Works category supports the creation of work, the presentation of both new and existing work, lifelong learning in the arts, and public engagement with the arts through 13 arts disciplines or fields.