Education Showcase - February 17, 10am-12pm, Santa Fe Woman's Club

Join us as we showcase young musicians from several of Santa Fe’s youth arts organizations. Participants include the Santa Fe Youth Symphony Association, the Nacha Mendez Music Scholarship, and the New Mexico School for the Arts.

Hosted at the Santa Fe Woman’s Club and organized by the Santa Fe Youth Symphony Association, this free performance will offer something for the whole family, highlighting the important work that each of these organizations does to engage the community!


Santa Fe Youth Symphony Association

Santa Fe Youth Symphony Association’s Mission is to inspire and engage the youth of Northern New Mexico’s multicultural communities through excellent music education, the guidance of music professionals, and performance opportunities from small ensemble to full orchestra in Jazz, Mariachi and Orchestra.

Our Vision is to create and nurture a lifelong passion for music-making through performances that enhance the region’s cultural atmosphere.

Nacha Mendez Music Scholarship

Music is a powerful catalyst for personal growth. While it is an essential part of life for everyone, I believe music is particularly potent for young women and girls of color. My mission is to encourage and promote the art of instrumental and vocal performance in girls, ages 8-15, in the state of New Mexico.

I expect the recipients of the Nacha Mendez Music Scholarship for New Mexican Girls of Color to master the skills and acquire the knowledge to help guide them to the highest levels of music performance. I also aim to empower girls to discover their distinct and unique musical potential for years to come. I believe that when a girl has passion, dedication, and support, opportunity multiplies. 

I would like to share a little of my personal musical history and describe the seed that my brother planted in my ear that has now become a reality called the Nacha Mendez Music Scholarship for New Mexican Girls of Color.

New Mexico School for the Arts

New Mexico School for the Arts (NMSA), based in Santa Fe, is the only four-year, statewide, public high school serving artist-scholars across New Mexico with a rigorous, award-winning pre-professional arts and academics program.

NMSA provides students in 9th through 12th grades with intensive, pre-professional instruction in five major arts disciplines, Creative Writing and Literature, Dance, Music (Vocal, Jazz or Instrumental), Theatre, and  Visual Arts. Arts disciplines are taught daily by master teachers and professional artists in a 3-hour daily arts block that takes place after the academic day.

Our View: Education and Community Engagement

We believe the arts are essential. They teach students valuable lessons, like: practice makes perfect, small differences can have large effects, collaboration leads to creativity. The arts create multiple pathways to problem solving, and they teach that all problems have more than one solution.

Research shown the benefits of arts education on performance and culture—especially student motivation, attitudes, and attendance. Numerous reports discuss the ways that increased access and involvement in arts education encourage students to stay in school, excel in school, succeed in life, and do well later in life at work.

And yet, despite the impressive benefits of arts access and education, not all people have access to these quality experiences. 

Performing arts organizations across New Mexico (many of which are participating in Art + Sol) work every day to enrich the lives of our residents. Many companies offer free tickets for students or free family performances. Others offer 1:1 mentorship free of charge. Across Santa Fe, one can always find free, quality arts programming intended to engage community members. 

Each of us has more work to do. The Art + Sol Festival is committed to advancing the values of diversity, equity, inclusion, and access for all Santa Feans. We will work to expand access for Festival offerings. We invite all community members to participate in the Festival and let us know how we can do better.

The City of Santa Fe Arts & Culture Department said it best: 

“Culture embodies the shared complex and diverse heritage of a community, including its tangible and intangible virtues…It is the quiet and restless imagination that becomes an expression, from which emanates writing, song, performance, painting, sculpture, cuisine, dance, design, and story. When recognized, coalesced, and leveraged, culture is transformative. It ignites creativity, consciousness, and capacity.”