Blog Article

ILLINOIS HUMANITIES GRANTEE SPOTLIGHT: Fifth House Ensemble

Melissa Ngan, Executive Director at Fifth House Ensemble. Photo: Fifth House Ensemble

Illinois Humanities-Funded Project:
“Deep Listening” and Graphic Score Composition at the JTDC

Location:
Chicago, IL

Organization:
Founded in 2005, Fifth House Ensemble (5HE) taps the collaborative spirit of chamber music to create engaging performances and interactive educational programs, forging meaningful partnerships with unexpected venues, artists of other disciplines, educational institutions, and audiences of every type.

Project Funded by Illinois Humanities:
5HE has been in residence for six years at the Juvenile Temporary Detention Center running arts-integrated music composition residency activities within two strands: 16 classroom visits to the Nancy B. Jefferson Alternative School (NBJ) and a collaboration with Storycatchers Theatre’s 24-week residency program. Evaluated though a research partnership with Loyola University, these activities impact participants’ personal agency, empowerment, collective decision making, and creativity through the creation of graphic and text score compositions rooted in their own personal narratives and Deep Listening practice. This year, 5HE expands its work at NBJ to weekly, year-round engagement, presenting regular rituals that encourage a group culture of belonging, and help students to find mental and emotional freedom through mindfulness and creativity.

LEARN MORE ABOUT Fifth House Ensemble and read a Q&A with Melissa Ngan, Executive Director

About the Grantee Spotlight:
Bi-monthly Illinois Humanities highlights the work of our Community Grants program partners through our “Grantee Spotlight.” It shines the light on our grantee partner’s work, offering details about the organization and the funded project, as well as a Q&A with a team member at the organization. Learn more about other featured grantee partners and projects.