Washington, D.C. (JFK+50) Fifty-four years ago today, August 22, 1961, President and Mrs. John F. Kennedy welcomed handicapped children to the White House for a special concert given on the South Lawn.
This was the first in a series of concerts by and for young people which were planned and sponsored by the First Lady.
This first concert featured a symphony orchestra from the Brevard Music Center* of Transylvania County in western North Carolina.
JFK said the musicians who performed were "a great national cultural asset."
Pianist David Yu of New York City, a camp member, says...
"This place is musical heaven! The word's leading concert masters...come every year and it is absolutely incredible."
*Brevard Music Center was founded as Davidson Music School for Boys in 1936 by James C. Pfohl^. It became the Transylvania Music Camp in 1944 and finally BMC in 1955.
More than 400 gifted students ranging from middle school to post-collegiate studies attend a 7 week camp, presenting more than 80 concerts to 30,000 people each summer. The center encompasses a 180 acre site in the Blue Ridge Mountains of western NC.
^James Christian Pfohl, Sr. (1912-1997) started the music department at Davidson College at the age of 19. DC became the 1st men's college in the U.S. to offer credit for the study of applied music.
In addition to founding the Brevard Music Center, JCP served as conductor for the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra.
"Brevard Music Center," www.facebook.com/brevardmusiccenter
"Brevard Music Center," www.brevardmusic.org/
"Return to Camelot, Music of the Kennedy Years," www.wosu.org/
Brevard Music Center Entrance