About three and a half years ago, the Young Professionals’ Choral Collective
hosted its first rehearsal, and about 35 singers showed up; but for the past two years, the organization has been going strong, says KellyAnn Nelson, managing artistic director.
“We’re at over 350 singers on our roster,” Nelson says. “It’s grown much faster than we expected it to.”
The yp/CC is a growing organization that funds itself through donations and ticket sales, but it’s currently in the process of transitioning into the nonprofit sector.
“We realized it’s bigger than one person’s business.” Nelson says. “Part of our mission is that we’re not only a choir that makes music, but that we’re creating connections with local businesses, local arts organizations, and we have this triangle in addition to being a performing arts organization.”
On any given rehearsal night, you could find about 60 singers in what Nelson refers to as a “nontraditional space” (this cycle, it’s at Japp’s
) where yp/CC members patronize local establishments by purchasing cocktails before and after rehearsals.
As the organization evolves and begins to form its own nonprofit board, Nelson says she hopes it encourages yp/CC singers to go out into the local arts community and support and serve on other boards as well, to further the community relationships the organization continues to build upon.
The model has been so successful to this point that Nelson says other cities have reached out to her about creating similar ventures in their own spaces.
“I’m just so curious to see if this project is so successful because it’s just in people’s hearts and souls that they want to sing, and want to sing in a social, fun and accessible way, and that works everywhere—or if there’s something truly special about Cincinnati—that people just flock to this idea in a totally unexpected way,” Nelson says. “So that’s an interesting part of our experiment right now.”
• Support the yp/CC in its second annual crowdfunding campaign
by helping the organization reach its $5,000 dollar goal by May 23.
• Attend the yp/CC's spring concert May 20 at Rhinegeist Brewery
the yp/CC and sing.
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at the University of Cincinnati and a project manager for Charitable Words. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia.