Music in Common announces 2015 Summer Youth Summit

Date: 2/20/2015

GREAT BARRINGTON – Music in Common (MiC) announces the 2015 MiC Summer Youth Summit at Bard College at Simon’s Rock from July 19 to 29.

The Youth Summit enrolls American and international delegates to participate in a music and multimedia program for high school-aged teens. The program is open to anyone regardless of musical skill level. Registration is now open.

During the course of the 10-day program, participants live on campus and work collaboratively to write and record a song and make a music video. They gain hands-on knowledge of the creative and technical processes of songwriting, recording, performance, and videography as well as experiential learning of the important life skills of teambuilding, collaboration, communication, and critical thinking.

Integrated into the summit are field trips to many of the cultural destinations and natural places the Berkshires play home to. The Summit concludes with a public performance of the delegates’ song, screening of their video, and a community forum of the teens’ experiences in the program.

The 2014 summit brought together a diverse group of American teens with an equally diverse group of Israeli and Palestinian teens. In the midst of a raging war between Israel and Hamas, that was no easy feat.

“We didn’t think we were going to pull it off and it was literally down to the wire,” Music in Common Executive Director Todd Mack said. “We saw other organizations with similar programs cancel because of the war but that was never really an option in our minds. And I think that, because of the war, the experience for the kids was much more powerful and lasting, the bonds deeper, and the friendships more meaningful.”

It’s no surprise to Mack that he and the MiC team didn’t give in to the challenges the war presented. For the past five years, the nonprofit organization has committed itself to bridging divides and deepening understanding among Christians, Muslims, and Jews; and Israelis, Palestinians, and Americans. Mack founded MiC in 2005 in response to the murder of his friend and bandmate Danny Pearl, the Wall Street Journal reporter who was abducted in Pakistan shortly after 9/11. Over the past ten years, Music in Common has produced programs and events in some 250 communities throughout the world, serving thousands of people along the way. They have worked extensively in the Middle East since 2010.

Online registration for the 2015 MiC Youth Summit is now open at www.musicincommon.org/youthsummit and will close April 15 or when enrollment fills, whichever comes first.

Enrollment is limited to 25 delegates and is expected to fill quickly.

Scholarships are available. Videos from last year’s Summit can be viewed at http://youtu.be/1obs36_Q2LQ and http://tinyurl.com/q36sn3d. For additional information please contact Youth Summit project coordinator Nancy M. Rogers at nancy@musicincommon.org.