During his campaign, President Obama called for the creation of a national “Artists Corps” to bring artists as public servants into low-income and underserved communities and schools. Since taking office, the Music National Service (MNS) was formed. It is a new social enterprise that supports and expands the use of music to meet important civic and social goals.
MNS is piloting a “musical Peace Corps” called MusicianCorps and a “music volunteerism” network called MusicianMentors that will expand access to music education and improve youth achievement in underserved public schools and communities.
Seattle is one of four cities selected for this pilot program. The others include New Orleans, Chicago, and San Francisco. City of Seattle, Art Corps and Pearl Jam were brought in as program partners, and have served as advisers for the creation of MusicianCorps. 4Culture Arts Advisory Committee member, Eduardo Mendonça was selected as a fellow for the new MusicianCorps program.
MusicianCorps is a prototype for an artist service corps. Harnessing the power of music, MusicianCorps will engage musicians in one year of full-time service to bring their talents to low-income schools and communities and help build strong programs to engage youth and families.
We look forward to following the process and progress of this new initiative!
Photo: Eduardo Mendonça by Will Austin