Now in our 16th season, the Grammy Award–winning Brooklyn Youth Chorus Academy (BYCA) is both an educational institution and a group of five progressively advanced performing ensembles serving over 250 students annually. Dedicated to the founding principles of artistry, diversity, and community, BYCA helps young people from all backgrounds realize their potential as musicians and individuals.
Under the direction of Founder and Artistic Director Dianne Berkun, choristers acquire music skills and gain confidence and self-esteem through training and performance. Choristers study and perform a wide range of music—classical and non-classical—and BYCA has established an active commissioning program to develop new works for youth chorus across a variety of genres. Commissioned composers include Paul Moravec, David Lang, Nico Muhly, Fred Hersch, Andrew Lippa, and Kirk Nurock.
The Concert Chorus, BYCA’s advanced performing ensemble, is the chorus of choice for internationally renowned orchestras and artists. This year marks the sixth consecutive season in performance with the New York Philharmonic. The Chorus received a Grammy Award in 2005 (Best Classical Album) for its 2002 debut performance with the New York Philharmonic in John Adams’s On the Transmigration of Souls.
In recent years the Chorus has performed with such renowned artists as Philip Glass, Elton John, Lou Reed, Barbara Cook, Judy Collins, Andrea Boccelli, John Legend, Ray Davies, and the Mark Morris Dance Group. Television appearances have included The Late Show with David Letterman, Saturday Night Live, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, and the Martha Stewart Home for the Holidays Christmas Special. BYC choristers have toured Russia, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Germany, and have performed at prestigious venues in the US, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Madison Square Garden, and the White House.