This month, Arts Action 21 is pleased to spotlight the Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra, an educational and performing arts organization featuring young musicians based in the San Francisco Bay Area. The Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra, also known as FYCO, will be performing at this year's celebration of National Arts and Humanities Month on Sunday, October 16 at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts.
Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra promotes Chinese music as an integral part of Chinese-American culture by training young musicians to play traditional instruments. Through music, FYCO creates opportunities for students to learn Chinese culture, music heritage, and builds teamwork and leadership skills. Students’ repertoire includes Chinese folk songs, musical storytelling (Quyi), regional operas (Xiqu), and religious music.
Led by Chinese music educator and Artistic Director Gordon Lee, Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra has over 130 student musicians that comprise three groups of Beginner, Junior, and Senior skill levels. Most of the students are American-born Chinese youth, ranging from 7 to 18 years of age.
Georgia Lu is FYCO's General Manager, and her son Michael started playing with the orchestra when he was 6 years old. He is now 14, and plays in the Senior group. Regarding her son’s experience, Ms. Lu remarked:
“Our son has learned about the Chinese culture and history through the music. The orchestra teaches them teamwork, and you feel fulfilled and excited when they all have a very good performance.”
For more information about Firebird Youth Chinese Orchestra, visit http://www.fyco.org/.