|Dear friends and patrons,|
Within our organization’s mission are the words “elevate the human experience.” Unfortunately, our country has a 400-year history of ignoring Black voices, Black calls for justice, Black art and expression, and through systemic and structural racism has actively suppressed efforts to “elevate the human experience” of our Black brothers and sisters. Safety, justice, and equity are foundational to this human experience.
We stand in solidarity with Black artists and Black Americans here in Colorado and throughout the United States.
We have fallen short as a choral arts organization – a largely white organization – in elevating Black art, Black artists, and Black thought leadership.
And we recognize action is necessary.
We are going to start by using our platform, our privilege, and our voices to elevate the causes and voices of others. Kantorei and each member of its Board of Directors will be making donations to the following non-profit organizations in Colorado:
Black American West Museum and Heritage Center
Clothes to Kids of Denver
Colorado Freedom Fund
Our patrons and donors have been incredibly generous to Kantorei. We ask each of you to extend that generosity and make a one-time or recurring donation to each of these organizations, or other similar organizations in your community, and to support them in their missions. In the coming days, we will be highlighting each of these organizations to you.
But this one action is not enough.
In 2020 and each year beyond, Kantorei commits to:
• An artistic program featuring much more art from marginalized communities – especially art from Black artists and Black musicians
• Authentically engage with this art and with marginalized communities in our programming, selection of venues, choral workshop experiences, and community outreach
• At least 50% diversity of gender identity, ethnicity, and orientation on our Board of Directors
This is where our organization has chosen to start.
BLACK LIVES MATTER.
Your Kantorei Board of Directors: Keith Ferguson (President), Jennifer Moore (Vice President),
Matt Gierke (Secretary), Michael Bizzaro, Kevin Gunnerson, Susan Lewkow, Melissa Menter