Mission

To enhance community life by providing diverse and inclusive classical music programs, events, and performances, featuring Latino arts and culture, in order to build intercultural understanding, foster connection and engagement, and strengthen the leadership and voice of underrepresented communities in the Pacific Northwest.

Vision

Orquesta Northwest music programs, performances, and events, featuring Latinx artists, composers, and culture, serve as a bridge to excellence in every dimension of life, empowering marginalized communities, especially youth, and strengthening their voice in civic life.

History

Founded in 2019, Orquesta Northwest is the culmination of three programs that have developed over the last thirteen years. 

In the beginning, Young Strings Outreach (YSO), formerly Young Strings Project Outreach, launched in 2006 as a platform to provide underprivileged youth with free instruction on classical string instruments. Initiatives from YSO expanded outside of Seattle to provide opportunities for youth in Mexico. After the expansion of YSO, the Ballard Civic Orchestra (BCO) was founded in 2015 to provide adult professional and amateur musicians an opportunity to perform classical music with an emphasis on Latinx artists for the Seattle community. In 2017, an opportunity arose for a conducting program designed to find balance between the demands of the business and the preservation of one’s individual musicianship as a necessity to achieve excellence. This began the founding of Cascade Conducting which exists to provide conductors with the skills they need moving forward into a career in today’s world. 

Guided by these three individual programs – Young Strings Outreach, Ballard Civic Orchestra, and Cascade Conducting – they have now been brought together under the newly-established 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization Orquesta Northwest as of June 2019.