Nonprofit Alum aims to “break the stuffiness” of classical music in the PNW

Nonprofit Management Alum Andrew Goldstein wants to “break the stuffiness of classical music.”

Goldstein’s solution: founding Emerald City Music, a new non-profit organization that will bring world-renown classical music to the Puget Sound through performances and education. Emerald City Music’s mission is to bring a fresh approach to a new audience, connecting with a younger generation where they already feel comfortable, in coffee shops not just concert halls.

With a Bachelor’s degree in Arts Management and experience working with symphony and chamber music organizations form Connecticut to California; Goldstein had the arts experience but didn’t know how to turn his idea into reality.

“I had no clue of what steps I should take to start a non-profit, or how I should go about fundraising,” Goldstein said, which led him to Northeastern’s graduate certificate in nonprofit management.

“The non-profit program really gave me the tools to be out doing this in real life. I learned how to establish a viable 501(c)(3), how a Board of Directors is supposed to function and how to establish oversight,” he said. “I feel Northeastern equipped me so, so well to look at everything as a whole and look at where we’re going as an organization.”

Andrew Goldstein live streams the outreach performance from WeWork South Lake Union on Periscope and Facebook Live.

Andrew Goldstein live streams the first outreach performance from WeWork South Lake Union on Periscope and Facebook Live.

When looking for a natural home to launch his mission Goldstein wanted to set up in a location that would reach the most people who were exposed and interested in music, but weren’t attending classical events.

“We landed on South Lake Union because it’s such an epicenter for growth, but also an island where not a lot of arts are performing here,” Goldstein said. “The art scene in Seattle is phenomenal, but we felt it wasn’t keeping up with the growth of the city, rise of millennial generation.”

Having moved from New York to Seattle during the grad program, Andrew officially left his full-time job in September 2015 to focus on launching Emerald City Music. He and Artistic Director Kristen Lee have been operating in volunteer positions in order to launch.

“We’ve poured everything we have – hearts and souls – into really building this,” – Andrew Goldstein, Executive Director of Emerald City Music

After 14 months of administrative work, Emerald City Music is ready to launch their first official performance season starting this Fall. The season will feature 7 concerts and 45 artists in Seattle, Tacoma and Olympia. Many of the artists, while internationally renowned, have never performed in the Pacific Northwest and Goldstein is excited to provide access to this international community of artists.
Emerald City Music
Learn more about Emerald City Music’s premiere season at
This week, guitarist Jordan Dodson and violinist Lee arrived from New York for a series of outreach concerts at Google, Amazon, Microsoft and WeWork South Lake Union. To cap off the weeklong celebration of launching their first season, Emerald City Music is hosting a benefit concert this Saturday, July 16. The evening’s program features music by Bach, Paganini, Piazzolla, and a duet by Vivian Fung recently commissioned for Lee.

At the first of their outreach concerts at WeWork South Lake Union, Lee encouraged the full audience to join the community atmosphere and relaxing environment of an intimate concert experience.

“It’s about experiencing music as who you are, you don’t have to be afraid,” she said.

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