SSCA’s Young Composer Initiative is anchored in the belief that every student has the right to be musically literate. Music literacy is like language literacy—there is a natural progression from hearing to singing to reading and then writing. The YCI program combines live music-making in class with a progressive, technology-based composition curriculum. Highlights of the program are the annual concerts where all fifth and sixth grade students have their pieces played by a professional chamber ensemble. All seventh grade students refine their composition skills and develop digital mixing and editing skills to compose and record a full-length Hip-Hop track and explore film scoring. In the culminating compositions of the YCI, eighth graders compose a four-part choral piece in Latin for a mass and a protest song for their exit project.
Watch the video below for an example of a 6th Grader’s composition performed live by a professional ensemble at the Church of Saint Saviour.