Sprott and McGill Create New Endowment Fund

Monday, Sep 14, 2020
Juilliard Journal
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Anthony McGill teaching a MAP student
Anthony McGill (right) with MAP faculty member Jo-Ann Sternberg and MAP alum Philip Flagg

Anthony McGill wins Fisher Prize and co-creates MAP endowment

Since the announcement of this new endowment for MAP was made, Juilliard has been thrilled to welcome a groundswell of support that has more than tripled this vital new fund to help young MAP artists, and it continues to grow. Increasing access to summer music programs to even more deserving students speaks directly to the program’s mission. If you are interested in helping, please contact Katie Murtha, director of major gifts, at [email protected].

September 15—The news today that Anthony McGill, artistic director of Juilliard’s Music Advancement Program (MAP), had won this year’s Avery Fisher Prize came with an exciting additional announcement. Ordinarily, the Avery Fisher Artist Program would have a large in-person celebration of the prizewinner, but this year, in lieu of holding the event, the organization invited McGill to designate an organization to receive an additional gift of $30,000, and he chose MAP. Adding to this new support, McGill and Weston Sprott, dean of Juilliard’s Preparatory Division (which encompasses MAP and Pre-College), have inspiringly made personal contributions to start a new Juilliard endowment fund dedicated to enabling MAP students to attend summer programs and festivals—the Weston Sprott and Anthony McGill MAP Summer Scholarship Fund. This new endowment will start with $30,000 from the Fisher Program and an additional $70,000 in personal commitments from McGill and Sprott.

The Avery Fisher Prize, one of the most prestigious in classical music, is awarded to the musician or musicians who have demonstrated outstanding achievement, excellence, and leadership in music. The first one, in 1975, went to Lynn Harrell (Pre-College ’61, cello; faculty 1977-86). McGill, who is just completing his first year as artistic director of MAP, has been the principal clarinetist of the New York Philharmonic since 2014, is an active soloist, and is an avid champion of social justice and of music education for underrepresented groups.

“For MAP students to fulfill their potential as artists, leaders, and global citizens, they need the experience of playing and moving in the world of classical music,” McGill said upon receiving the Fisher prize and announcing the new endowment. But without the means to attend summer programs and festivals, young musicians “lose out on all the opportunities found in connecting with artists, professionals, and audiences beyond their immediate sphere.” The new endowment will start with $30,000 from the Fisher Program and an additional $70,000 in personal commitments from McGill and Sprott. 

“These summer experiences are key for our MAP students to continue their learning, training and growth as musicians,” Sprott said. “We invite others to join us in contributing to this fund, which will provide much needed support to our students and their families.” 

“On behalf of Juilliard, I am honored to accept this gift,” Damian Woetzel, Juilliard’s president, said. “With this extraordinary personal and professional commitment, Anthony and Weston are profoundly furthering the development of our young artists who might not otherwise be able to participate in these important opportunities. Their leadership is truly inspiring.”

The gift “will further expand MAP’s funding base and help dismantle one key systemic barrier to greater ethnic and racial inclusion in the classical music field,” said former MAP director Aaron Flagg (BM ’92, MM ’93, trumpet), who’s the chair and associate director of Juilliard Jazz. “As a former MAP faculty member and director and, most importantly, MAP parent, I view this generous investment by two of the program's current leaders as an inspiration for the entire Juilliard community to step forward and be counted,” Flagg added. 

>To find out about contributing to the new endowment fund, please contact Katie Murtha, director of major gifts, at [email protected]