CONGRATULATIONS MARCH GRANT RECIPIENT, MALESHA TAYLOR!
(Courtesy of generous donations through the Network for Good.)
Click here to learn about our other March artist grant recipient, Rachel Wallis.
Congratulations to Malesha Taylor on a successful grant application!
The following is Malesha's application:
I am an opera singer and have been singing classical music for 20 years. Six of those years were spent training in school as a vocal performance major in undergrad and grad school. The road to becoming a professional opera singer is not easy. You have to learn at least 4 languages well (Italian, French, German and Spanish/Russian/Czech) and you have to pay for your training. Often times, most singers are funded by private patrons, but some of us are not so fortunate and we work multiple jobs to afford piano coaches and voice training. I am also a minority, as a black female opera singer. It is hard for me to get hired in most productions because the art form is mostly European. After years of being out of school, I discovered that there were black composers who wrote operas about black people. This was encouraging to me, but these operas are rarely performed or funded. I recently gave a TEDx talk about the importance of diversity in opera, especially for the next generation. I sang a classical art song by Afro-Scottish composer, Richard Thompson at the end of the talk, whose lyrics were the poetry of Langston Hughes. Everyday people were informed and enlightened about classical music and how diverse it can be. I now make an effort to share my story with others and sing African-American classical music to show how connected we are as human beings irregardless of race or class.
I will be giving a recital at the San Diego Public Library with Richard Thompson, composer/pianist. This is a rare performance as an African-American classical voice recital has never been done in the history of the libraries' musical series. Although we receive a stipend or $200, it is not enough to cover our 2 weeks of rehearsal in the studio and our travel expenses.
Integrity: Arts and Cultural Association is pleased to assist in funding Malesha's proposal! We wish her the best in her future artistic endeavors.