Wednesday, November 18, 2015 Ritz Chamber Players' Terrance Patterson first winner of new Art Ventures award

Times-Union archives
Terrance Patterson, photographed by the Times-Union in January 2011 at the Times-Union Center, is the recipient of the Community Foundation new Ann McDonald Baker Art Ventures Award marking its 25-year-anniversary.

AfriClassical warmly congratulates Terrance Patterson on his receipt of the Art Ventures Award of $10,000 for founding the Ritz Chamber Players in 2002 and serving as its Artistic and Executive Director since then.

By Charlie Patton

Nov. 18, 2015

This year the Community Foundation is celebrating 25 years of its Art Ventures program, which since 1990 has made about 150 grants to individual artists and small arts groups totaling roughly $1 million.
To mark the anniversary, the foundation created the Ann McDonald Baker Art Ventures Award, which grants $10,000 to “an extraordinary local artist whose work brings distinction to Northeast Florida.”
Monday during a private reception at the J. Johnson Gallery, the foundation announced that Terrance Patterson, the 48-year-old founder and artistic and executive director of the Ritz Chamber Players, is the award’s first winner.
Patterson, a Jacksonville native who fell in love with classical music after hearing it on WJCT (89.9 FM) as a child, took up the clarinet at 11, trained under Peter Wright, the Jacksonville Symphony’s principal clarinetist, and went on to attend the Peabody Conservatory at Johns Hopkins University.
Only about 2 percent of classical musicians are African-American, Patterson said, and as he performed with various groups, he usually found himself “the only person of color” in the room. He worried about what black children thought when they attended a classical concert and “no one who looked like them was on the stage.”
That led him to found the Ritz Chamber Players, a chamber orchestra composed of African-American musicians that performs concert seasons in both Jacksonville and Atlanta and does educational outreach. The group’s first concert, on Feb. 22, 2002, was at the Ritz Theatre & Museum, which is why the organization is named the Ritz Chamber Players.

Comment by email:
Greetings Bill - Thank you so very much!  We appreciate the post and thank you again for your tremendous support!  LUV - Terrance  [Terrance L. Patterson]

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