Orchestra US Creates Musical Connections, Transforms Lives

A new nonprofit organization is tapping into the power of performing arts to change the lives of young talented musicians and residents living in underserved rural communities — and PCF is helping to make this artistic vision a reality.

Launched under the leadership of Paul Jan Zdunek, former CEO of the Pasadena Symphony Association, Orchestra US plans to connect music school and conservatory graduates with smaller under-resourced art communities across the country. Graduates can develop their leadership skills with real life lessons in arts management while sharing their love of music to a wide audience.

“We want to take a garden of arts and grow it into a forest,” says Orchestra US President and CEO Paul Jan Zdunek.

Recent graduates will be trained in program development and cultural sensitivity before they start their Fellowship residencies. Performing artists will co-create with local residents drawing inspiration from regional cultures. Programs can run the gamut from music to dance to theatrical expressions, says Zdunek. The goal: to develop vibrant arts-based programs with artistic, economic and cultural benefits.

A composer and conductor, Zdunek also has a substantial business management background. Already, Orchestra US has an impressive advisory board and board of directors with many high-profile entertainment industry professionals.

To keep the momentum going, Orchestra US worked with PCF to set up a Fiscally Sponsored Fund which allows the organization to receive tax deductible donations from supporters while its 501c3 status is being finalized.

“Having PCF help us with donations, allows us to grow. Now we can concentrate on organizing ourselves on a national level,” says Zdunek. “Our plan is to kick off the program next June with six residencies and let it scale up from there.”