Skip to main content

Dear Chicago Musical Pathways Initiative community,

Can you imagine a holiday season without music? From popular songs to church choirs to roaming carolers—and even some of those earworm commercial jingles—these festive tunes add such joy to one of my favorite times of the year. As CMPI Project Director, I also would like to point out the diversity of this seasonal of music.

Adrienne Thompson, CMPI Project Director | Todd Rosenberg Photography

A recent Nielsen poll found that holiday music has one of the biggest, broadest appeals across all of America. I like to think that this is, in part, because of the variety of the music offered, from genres to artists. Nat King Cole and Mariah Carey can be heard on the radio in succession with the Boston Pops Orchestra. Secular songs and spiritual songs alternate with one another on Spotify playlists.  José Feliciano’s timeless classic “Feliz Navidad” turns 50 years old this year. Even Bing Crosby’s timeless classic, “White Christmas,” was written by Irving Berlin—a Jewish immigrant. And K-pop Christmas tunes are receiving hundreds of millions of views on YouTube.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the same diversity reflected in holiday music were to be reflected within the classical music landscape? CMPI is creating a pipeline of great musicians, of great character, and we will move forward and prosper in this new year because of the communities in which we surround ourselves. Let us resolve to embrace the holiday spirit by celebrating our differences and achieving our goals together.

Finally, I am so pleased to announce an end-of-year Matching Gift Campaign. Thanks to an anonymous donor, all contributions made between now and January 15 will be matched through this dollar for dollar matching incentive, meaning your contribution will be worth double its value. As you will read in this month’s newsletter, your gift can have an immediate impact on the lives of our CMPI Fellows. Your support will continue to allow access to great mentors and teachers, fund the purchasing of new instruments, cover the cost of pricey college applications and auditions, and so much more. Please, consider making this end-of-year gift today.

Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanzaa, and here’s to a safe, prosperous, and healthy new year! Thank you for your continued support and have the happiest of holidays.


Adrienne Thompson
Project Director | Chicago Musical Pathways Initiative

Are you interested in joining CMPI’s next cohort?

Apply Today!