Chicago Children’s Choir (CCC) is thrilled to announce its 2021/22 season, which celebrates the nonprofit’s 65-year history of uniting youth from diverse backgrounds and inspiring them to become global ambassadors through music.
The robust performance schedule kicks off with Chicago’s most inspirational gala, Red Jacket Optional, in person at The Geraghty (2520 S. Hoyne Ave.) on October 16, 2021. As in recent years, the gala’s exciting performances will be broadcast online. In addition to the revival of Songs of the Season with a cohort of alumni for this milestone year and the in-person return of the Black History Month concert series, Paint the Town Red, a city-wide celebration of youth and music, also returns in person in May 2022.
This fall, CCC is making it easier than ever for young people to participate in the Choir’s wide selection of arts learning programs. Notably, the 2021/22 season marks the return of in-person singing for CCC’s 12 community-based Neighborhood Choirs, all of which provide beginning, intermediate, and advanced arts learning. Building off its successes last year, the Choir is also expanding upon its online offerings with the addition of eCCC, a new virtual choir, as well as by bringing back the popular Arts Enrichment Sessions, making it easy for students to dive even deeper into topics that interest them most.
Students ages 8-18 are invited to join singers across the city and can now sign up for programs at ccchoir.org/join. No prior experience is necessary. In keeping with the Choir’s belief that a world-class music education should be available to everyone regardless of circumstance, tuition for CCC programs is offered on a sliding scale.
“For six and a half decades, Chicago Children’s Choir has been on the ground doing the work to make a better world through the power of music,” says Josephine Lee, CCC President. “We’re at a crossroads. Our youth crave connections with each other, connections that experts tell us they desperately need. So we’re providing opportunities for our community and youth to connect and engage with each other. We honestly cannot wait to invite Chicago to join us as we build a more harmonious world together.”
In addition to its return to in-person programs, CCC continues to churn out innovative artistic projects with the release of its latest full-length album, Long Way Home–produced in collaboration with the award-winning Q Brothers Collective—which is available today on all major streaming platforms.
Screen still from a previous Black History Month concert series. Courtesy of Chicago Children’s Choir.
The performance schedule for the 2021-22 season is as follows; learn more at ccchoir.org:
Red Jacket Optional
- October 16, 2021
- In-person at The Geraghty (2520 S. Hoyne Ave.) and streaming online at ccchoir.org
This concert imagines a harmonious world without judgment and division—a world that Chicago Children’s Choir brings to life every day. Chicago’s most inspirational gala returns this fall to celebrate 65 years of experiences while looking forward to what the next 65 years of transformation through music will look like. This gala supports Chicago Children’s Choir’s mission to inspire and change lives through music.
For more information on RJO, visit www.rjo.ccchoir.org.
Songs of the Season
- December 18, 2021
- Epiphany Center for the Arts (201 S. Ashland Ave.)
This decades-old annual tradition returns in 2021 to celebrate the many ways people commemorate the holidays through a mix of timeless seasonal favorites from cultures around the world. This year, in celebration of the Choir’s 65th anniversary, there will be a special alumni reunion with performances by CCC’s world-renowned Voice of Chicago ensemble, the Hyde Park Neighborhood Choir, and a consortium of Choir alums.
Black History Month concert series: Remembering, Reclaiming, Reconnecting
- February 7-9, 2022
- Harris Theater (205 E. Randolph St.)
Chicago Children’s Choir’s school program participants unite with the neighborhood choirs and Voice of Chicago for a dynamic educational program celebrating the vast and vivacious culture of the African Diaspora. This cornerstone tradition, curated by resident Africana Studies Director Lonnie Norwood, returns this year to salute Africana music and its indelible impact on Chicago and the world.
Paint the Town Red
- May 2022
- Location will be announced on a later date
For the first time since 2019, CCC’s signature city-wide celebration of music’s power to bring people together will return featuring thousands of Choir singers from all Chicago zip codes, alongside special guest artists.
Canto Latino Festival
- June 11, 2022
- Location will be announced on a later date
This annual event brings together students from across CCC’s programs for a celebration of Chicago's proud Latin American heritage through song, story, and dance. Through the theme of Raíces (Spanish for “Roots”), this year Canto Latino will recognize and celebrate the indigenous influence on folk music from Colombia, Perú, and Brazil.
Learn more about CCC and ways to engage at ccchoir.org.
About Chicago Children’s Choir
Founded in Hyde Park in direct response to the Civil Rights Movement in 1956, Chicago Children’s Choir (CCC) has grown from one choir into a vast network of in-school, after-school, and online programs driven by one mission: to inspire and change lives through music. CCC has impacted the lives of more than 50,000 diverse youth throughout its 65-year history. Since its founding, CCC has focused on building programs that reflect the racial and economic diversity of Chicago. Eighty percent of youth served are from low-to-moderate income homes and participate completely free of charge. High school seniors enrolled in CCC have a 100 percent graduation rate, becoming global ambassadors who carry on CCC’s core values in a wide array of professional fields.
Under the leadership of President Josephine Lee, Chicago Children’s Choir has achieved new heights and revolutionized the youth choral arts through innovative creative partnerships and new artistic endeavors. The Choir recently collaborated with GRAMMY Award-winning music director and producer Peter CottonTale on his original song “Together” for Google’s 2020 Year in Search video, which went viral with more than 240 million views. Other recent projects include the 2020 PBS national broadcast of the new staged production of Leonard Bernstein’s MASS under the direction of Marin Alsop in July 2018 and 2019 with two frequent creative partners: the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Ravinia Festival; Lyric Opera’s production of Dead Man Walking and Tchaikovsky’s romantic thriller The Queen of Spades with select Chicago Children’s Choir singers cast as the children’s chorus; the world-premiere hip hop musical Long Way Home, written and directed by the renowned Q Brothers Collective, which played to five sold-out houses in 2018 and was subsequently released as a one-of-a-kind album in 2021; and collaboration on Chance the Rapper’s critically-acclaimed directorial debut, Magnificent Coloring World (2021), as well as on his debut studio album The Big Day (2019) and his GRAMMY Award-winning Coloring Book (2016) studio recording and tour performances. CCC has served as a model for youth choirs across the country including Boston Children’s Chorus, Denver Children’s Choir, and Indianapolis Children’s Choir.