The Bitter Jester Foundation for the Arts (BJFA) is based in Highland Park with an emphasis on bringing art & artists to the city of Highland Park and its residents. BJFA programs and events also encourage members of the surrounding communities to come to Highland Park, many for the very first time, to explore and experience all that the City has to offer. At its core, BJFA is an arts organization but everything BJFA does revolves around the social dynamic of building a vibrant local community and connecting people. Their grant will assist in producing live music and theatrical performances in Highland Park, including a summer music competition for 12-21 year-old musicians.
The mission of the Highland Park Strings is to provide community concerts free of charge where families, friends, and neighbors can gather for an afternoon of musical enjoyment at the highest level featuring top-notch soloists, many from the Chicago Symphony, others from the world stage, and gifted rising stars who are given the opportunity to shine. The Foundation’s grant supports three of their free Sunday afternoon concerts.
The Midwest Young Artists Conservatory (MYA) is a top rated youth music ensemble program offering exceptional training in jazz, choral, chamber and orchestral instruction. MYA offers a tradition of nurturing leadership that continues as a core value of their programs. Highland Park Community Foundation’s grant supports the MYA’s Music in the Fort series of six concerts that are performed as a gift for Highland Park/Highwood/Fort Sheridan residents so they can enjoy informal concerts by outstanding musicians in an informal space.
The Music Institute of Chicago (MIC) is dedicated to transforming lives through music education. Founded in 1931, the Music Institute has grown to become one of the largest and most respected community music schools in the nation. Offering musical excellence built on the strength of its distinguished faculty, commitment to quality, and breadth of programs and services, the Music Institute is a member of the National Guild for Community Arts Education and accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Pre-collegiate Arts Schools (ACCPAS). The Music Institute offers lessons and classes, and concerts through its Community Music School, Academy, and Nichols Concert Hall. Funding provided by the Highland Park Community Foundation is used to support “Music for Life,” a free library program designed for children 4-8 to experience classical music.
The Art Center Highland Park (TAC) is dedicated to education in the visual arts through classes, outreach programs, gallery exhibitions, and events. TAC is a community-based organization that has been in existence since 1960, whose goal is to ensure access to the arts for all ages and cultural interests. TAC inspires everyone from children through seniors to achieve and transform their world through more than 400 classes offered annually. TAC also brings national and regional art of established and emerging artists to our galleries through 20 exhibits of contemporary art each year to the surrounding community and Chicagoland area. The grant from the Foundation assists in implementing its Make Art Count Initiative, which provides support and enrichment to the most underserved and underprivileged members of our community through art education scholarship and programming.
The core mission of Uptown Music Theater is to provide educational instruction and training to help individuals improve and develop their capabilities in theater in a high-quality, professional, and non-discriminatory environment. The theater company works cooperatively with other community organizations, schools, and park districts to create theatrical experiences that are meaningful, accessible, and inclusive. Coming in the Summer of 2021: Freckleface Strawberry The Musical.