By TONIA HILL
The Chicago Children’s Choir (CCC) will host its annual fall gala, “Red Jacket Optional,” on Friday, Oct. 20 and is seeking to raise more than $1 million to support programs for 4,600 students across the city. The gala will also recognize outstanding community partners.
The CCC was founded in Hyde Park in 1956, with the mission to unite young people from diverse backgrounds. The group has 4,600 members who are enrolled across 57 Chicago zip codes, and there are 106 choirs within 80 Chicago schools.
Singers from the CCC’s ensemble, Voice of Chicago, as well as neighborhood choirs will perform throughout the Gala. The gala will be held at The Geraghty, 2520 S. Hoyne Ave. Tickets and sponsorship are available at ccchoir.org/RJO.
CCC is partnered with organizations across the city with schools and community groups. CCC will recognize three community partners at the event including Josephine Robinson, partner coordinator at World Vision – Englewood; Erin Roche, principal at Prescott Elementary School in Lincoln Park and Dr. Susanne Baker, director of the Community Music Division at DePaul University.
Robinson, said the CCC in a written statement, “is dedicated to improving the quality and access of resources to children in need.”
Roche joined Prescott in 2010. The school was slated to close at the end of the 2010 school year. Since then “the school has grown to 400+ students testing in high percentiles for both math and reading. Today, Prescott has nearly 100 students involved in CCC in-school programs,” said the CCC in a written statement.
The Community Music Division since its creation in 1988 has provided music instruction to students of all age groups, abilities and backgrounds.
“We are so grateful for our partnerships with Josephine, Erin, and Susanne,” said Josephine Lee, president and artistic director of the CCC in a written statement. “We are about more than teaching performance and theory. We unify the city and create bonds between children of all backgrounds through providing safe spaces for expression. This wouldn’t be possible without close ties to the communities through embedded groups and individuals.”
This year the CCC has performed in a number events, including, President Obama’s farewell address, Chance the Rapper’s performance at Lollapalooza, Ravenna and Ravello festivals in Italy, Yo-Yo Ma’s Concert for Peace at St. Sabina Church, Van Jones’ WE RISE tour and others.