The countdown is on for NEMPAC’s annual fundraiser!

In response to the pandemic, we reimagined this beloved yearly tradition into an online fundraising concert. At 6 p.m. sharp on Sunday, October 4, Nuestras Raíces will commence as community members across the North End, Charlestown and surrounding greater-Boston neighborhoods gather virtually via Zoom.

The goal of this virtual fundraising concert is twofold. First, we seek to honor LatinX Heritage Month and showcase performances by LatinX faculty artists. Throughout the concert, audience members will hear from:

Jhon Alvarado, Classical Guitarist
Josaphat Contreras, Tenor 
Alexandra Dietrich, Mezzo-Soprano
Jose Soto, Pianist

Alexandra Dietrich, artistic director of Nuestras Raíces, explains,

We seek to welcome our audience into the rich sound and history of music that is Latinidad, a shared culture that is not limited to one or two traits and instead represents the diverse heritage found throughout Central and South America, as well as the Caribbean. Our LatinX faculty artists represent these regions and are excited to celebrate LatinX Heritage Month with their NEMPAC family and the Boston community at large. ¡Esperamos que disfrutes de la música!”

The second part of our goal in presenting this virtual fundraising concert is to raise money for NEMPAC’s annual fund, an income stream that enables us to empower artists of all ages and abilities. From supporting free public concerts to providing arts instruction to elementary through high-school students via our school partnerships, the annual fund sustains our quest to bring affordable, high-quality performances and programming to the greater-Boston area.

Our call for support is more urgent this year than ever before. Why? Simply put, as the pandemic continues to alter the fabric of daily life for families and businesses, we can’t think of a moment in our lifetimes when the opportunity to bring the transformative power of the arts to our communities was any more urgent.

Here at NEMPAC, we are fueled by the organizational belief that the arts are an expression of our shared humanity. We believe we are all musicians and performers because there is an artist in every person waiting to be fully realized and expressed.

From our vantage point, the pandemic has magnified the role of the arts in building community. Our faculty and staff are humbled beyond measure to see this strengthening of community day in and day out.

We see it in the delight of passersby on Hanover Street as they listen to selections of “Il barbiere di Siviglia” presented by NEMPAC’s Opera Project. Blank faces become animated again as live music imbues the neighborhood with a sense of bliss.

We see it when family members come together from across the world via Zoom for NEMPAC’s Open Mic Nights to cheer on a loved one. We see the joyful anticipation in their eyes as they wait for their loved one to take the virtual stage, and we see the newfound confidence that the performing artist has as a result of this community support.

We also see this strengthening of community through the uniting of our faculty artists and the next generation of rising artists as in-person private music instruction resumes. The indelible bonds between student and teacher make it easy to see that this arts instruction teaches much more than embouchure and technique and extends to empathy, self-awareness, and a deeper understanding of the interconnectedness of all people.

We humbly ask our community to consider either purchasing tickets or donating to Nuestras Raíces. Any donation amount—whether it’s $1, $100, or $1,000—will empower us to more fully realize our mission of empowering artists of all ages and abilities. General admission is $25 and NEMPAC student/faculty admission is $15, and tickets are available here.

Whether you purchase a ticket or donate to this virtual fundraising concert, we want you to know one thing in particular—your contribution transforms lives in the North End, Charlestown, and surrounding greater-Boston neighborhoods by bringing the power of the arts—an antidote to stress, a source of comfort and hope—to our local communities.

Sherri Snow, NEMPAC’s executive director, says, “NEMPAC will invest all funds raised by Nuestras Raíces into accessible, high-quality performances and programming that continue to nurture the next generation of artists, honor the traditions of live performance, and propel professional artists’ careers forward in the North End, Charlestown, and surrounding Boston neighborhoods. Community donations to this virtual fundraising concert will allow NEMPAC to continue to adapt its programming and performances amid the pandemic, and in doing so, fuel our shared vision to make the arts accessible to all.”

Nuestras Raíces