If you’ve ever seen “The Soloist,” starring Jamie Foxx, you are already familiar with Nathaniel Ayers’s story. The 2009 film was based on the life of Ayers, a Julliard-educated musician who has struggled with schizophrenia and homelessness throughout his life. After a chance meeting with Los Angeles Times columnist, Steve Lopez, Ayers was introduced to Adam Crane and Vijay Gupta of the LA Philharmonic. This relationship placed Nathaniel on the road to recovery and led to the creation of Street Symphony, a charity focusing on bringing music to the disenfranchised community of Los Angeles’s Skid Row.
Read more about Nathaniel, Street Symphony, and listen to a recent NPR story that includes the story of soldier returning home from Desert Storm and how music has helped him heal.