The Lewis Prize for Music

The Ensemble seeks to connect and inform all people who are committed to ensemble music education for youth empowerment and social change.

New Film from the Lewis Prize for Music


Want to see Creative Youth Development (CYD) in action? The Lewis Prize for Music, which supports youth-focused music organizations annually through their grants program, recently produced a short film to help increase public awareness and understanding of the CYD field.

Lewis Prize Announces 2023 Awardees


The Lewis Prize for Music has just announced their 2023 awardees, allocating more than $2 million to Creative Youth Development organizations across the U.S. and its territories.

Making Music to Make Healthy Minds


There have simply been too many starts and stops, too many hours of social distancing, too many people sick and dying, and too many acts of violence for any of us to feel fully stable. And the combined forces of destabilization—COVID’s erratic disruption of our lives, the prevalence of violence, and the ongoing struggle to overcome racism and homophobia—are taking their greatest toll on young people.

Lewis Prize for Music Opens Accelerator Award Applications


U.S.-based music organizations working in after-school or community settings, take note! The Lewis Prize for Music is now accepting applications for their 2023 Accelerator Awards.

The Lewis Prize for Music Announces Finalists for 2022 Prizes


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Lewis Prize for Music Shares New Research on the State of Our Field


The Lewis Prize for Music has done something unusual in the grant-making arena: it just released a detailed, probing report on the state of the field, titled “Midcasting Toward Just Futures: Creative Youth Development’s Waymaking to Systems Change Through and Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic.” Download the report via Lewis Prize to learn how over 280 music CYD organizations are meeting the challenges of our time, and what youth leaders are saying about systems change. The report focuses on “the intersection of this deep trust-building relational work with CYD’s internal justice orientations, direct service and immediate needs responsiveness, movement building, and partnerships, as a nexus of systems change.”

The Lewis Prize for Music Opens Applications for 2022 Accelerator Awards


The Lewis Prize for Music is now accepting 2022 Accelerator Awards applications. Accelerator Awards are open to Creative Youth Development (CYD) music organizations seeking to influence youth-serving systems so that all young people have access to learning, creating, and performing experiences that reflect their culture and identity. Applications are open until July 16, 2021, at 5 p.m. PST.

Midcasting* Toward Just Futures: Creative Youth Development’s Waymaking to Systems Change through and beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic


Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, creative youth development (CYD) organizations have been expanding their work to provide greater support to students, families, and communities impacted by the pandemic. To strengthen this response from the field, The Lewis Prize for Music offered a COVID-19 Response grant to 32 organizations of varying size and geographic locations. Totaling 1.25 million dollars, the fund supported organizations that were leading direct response efforts in their communities. These efforts offered mental health support, food access, housing security, civic engagement support, and academic support, among other things, alongside digital adaptation of regular program activities. Additionally, many CYD organizations supported youth engagement in various forms of movement-building, including, but not limited to, the Black Lives Matter movement and work against voter suppression.

The Lewis Prize for Music Announces Accelerator Awardees


The 2021 Lewis Prize for Music Accelerator Awardees have been announced!

Lewis Prize for Music Announces Accelerator Awards Finalists


The Lewis Prize for Music seeks out, honors, and supports programs they consider to be “catalysts” in the U.S. field for community-driven, high-quality music learning opportunities. The goal is to target and amplify programs that spark positive change in society. Listed among this year’s finalists is Atlanta Music Project, under the direction of Dantes Rameau and Aisha Moody; last year’s three grant recipients included Community MusicWorks in Providence, RI.


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