The renowned cellist Yo-yo Ma has performed a collaboration with a high school choir from Chicago, in order to promote education in the arts. The performance also included the soprano Renee Fleming and took place at the State of Illinois building in downtown Chicago.
Accompanied by the students, Ma and Fleming led a performance of 'America the Beautiful.' The performance marked a collaboration between the Lyric Opera of Chicago's Renee Fleming Initiative and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's Citizen Musician Initiative. The aim of both programmes is to spread enthusiasm for and enjoyment of music in the communities around Chicago. In the Washington Post, Yo-Yo Ma is quoted as saying "An integrated arts curriculum is to me, it means that we have people who are in touch with who they are on the inside and in touch with what they can receive from the outside. That to me will create the best possible work force."