The Mosaic Project
Harmony + Diversity = Hope

Apollo’s Fire believes that early music speaks to all people, and that live concerts are communal experiences. Those experiences are more meaningful if they truly represent our diverse communities, including people of color – both in the audience and onstage.

In 2020, Apollo’s Fire is proud to launch the MOSAIC PROJECT– the second phase of AF’s Community Access Initiative. In this phase, Apollo’s Fire seeks to increase diversity throughout the organization and audience, and ultimately, to help seed diversity throughout the national early music field.

Why Mosaic? Like early music, a mosaic is an ancient art form. Just as a baroque composition consists of small thematic gestures linked together in harmony, so a mosaic picture consists of small, varied, colored pieces assembled in a design. In mosaics and in early music, the diverse, multicolored bits work harmoniously together to create the beauty of the whole.

Conceived by Artistic Director Jeannette Sorrell, this ambitious Diversity, Equity, and Inclusivity initiative offers training, performance, and mentoring for talented young musicians of color. The program has clear targets for the next 3-5 years as we seek to diversify AF’s Musettes Ensemble (treble youth chorus), professional chorus, Board, staff, and the orchestra. Apollo’s Fire seeks to nurture a new generation of baroque musicians of color, helping to build a more diverse pool of early music performers within 5-10 years.

The Pipeline:

The MOSAIC project seeks to nurture future musicians of color through a “pipeline” approach – reaching children, teens, and young adults at multiple touch points throughout a young musician’s development. Over the course of 3-8 years, talented young musicians of color will be inspired through interactions and mentoring by AF’s artistic personnel at various levels, reinforcing the message that “we all belong” in this world of classical music.

The program includes:

  • Diversity Fellowships, providing professional performance opportunities and mentoring for talented young classical musicians of color. The Fellows are drawn from a national pool. They work with Artistic Director Jeannette Sorrell and AF core musicians, performing in Apollo’s Fire subscription and tour concerts and outreach activities.
  • Music Outreach Internships, providing paid internship opportunities for college-age music students who perform in AF’s in-school workshops and Family Concerts. The Interns are drawn from the Northeast Ohio area. They work with Artist-in-Residence for Outreach Performances Amanda Powell.
  • Small-group classical music coachings for children of color through AF’s Musettes Ensemble (treble youth chorus), CIM’s Musical Pathways Fellowship program, and the Rainey Institute in urban Cleveland
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Apollo’s Fire welcomes these artists to the MOSAIC team:

Reggie Mobley, Visiting Artist for Diversity Outreach

Reggie is a respected countertenor with an international solo career. His European engagements include the Academy of Ancient Music, the English Baroque Soloists & Monteverdi Choir (John Elliot Gardiner), the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, and Bachfest Leipzig. In North America, he has performed with the Seattle Symphony, Calgary Symphony, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Handel & Haydn Society (Boston), and the Boston Early Music Festival, among others.
 
With roots in the Deep South and the struggles of the black community, Reggie is dedicated to helping the classical music industry overcome its inequality issues regarding race, gender, and sexuality. A strong devotion to social and political activism is part of Reggie’s everyday life, adding to his strength in reaching diverse communities. His outreach experience includes designing programs of music by 18th-century African composers who worked in Europe. A versatile artist, Reggie has performed cabaret shows of gospel, jazz, and torch songs in jazz clubs. He serves as programming consultant for the Handel & Haydn Society, where he directs the “Every Voice” program.

Ashlee Foreman, Diversity Fellow

Ashlee is a talented young soprano who is currently a Master’s candidate at the University of Akron. She holds a degree in vocal performance from Cleveland State University, where she studied voice with Amanda Powell. While an undergrad, Ashlee served as AF’s first Artistic Outreach Intern, singing the role of Princess Pamina in AF’s in-school workshops and performances. She has performed with the Akron Symphony Orchestra and Cleveland Opera. In 2020 she joined AF’s professional chorus, Apollo’s Singers, with whom she has performed in Cleveland and New York City.

Liz Bullock, Music Outreach Intern

Liz is a vocalist and Music Therapy student at Cleveland State University, where she has studied Voice with Amanda Powell. Liz began her musical journey at a young age, singing in choirs at The Music Settlement and with The Singing Angels. She then went on to study contemporary music at the Cleveland School of Rock where she was able to tour nationwide with other young musicians. Liz has performed in AF’s in-school workshops and Family Concerts, and is an active freelance singer in the Cleveland area. She is currently a Music Therapy Intern at University Hospitals, where she uses music to help patients in the healing process.

“The U.S.A.’s hottest baroque band.” –CLASSICAL MUSIC MAGAZINE (UK)