Below are the mission, vision, values, and some facts of the East Lake Expression Engine. The East Lake Expression Engine is an El Sistema-inspired music education program in the East Lake neighborhood of Chattanooga, TN. Come to the Expression Engine breakout session to hear details about how the program started, how it's connected to the larger ministry of the of NCF East Lake, and where it's headed in the future. 

Mission Statement  

 East Lake Expression Engine is an after school music program based at New City Fellowship East Lake that develops the creativity, social identity, spiritual health, and problem solving skills of its students through musical instruction and collaboration.

Vision Statement

We are inspired by the El Sistema movement, believing that music is an effective avenue for instigating social change and building up a strong community by investing in the development of its children. Our instruction provides a framework for students’ personal and musical growth, and our partnership with the church provides opportunities for long-lasting relationships and the support of an enduring presence in the neighborhood.  


East Lake Expression Engine strives to:

  • Provide excellent musical instruction at no cost to under-serviced youth in Chattanooga’s East Lake neighborhood
  • Create a stable and supportive environment for children to explore and to be creative and vulnerable with mentors and instructors
  • Support the work of K-12 schools and music educators in the East Lake area
  • Form a lasting partnership with New City Fellowship which supports the church’s work in the East Lake neighborhood


East Lake Expression Engine currently serves 45 children between the ages of 4 and 12, who attend schools in the East Lake neighborhood.  Our staff and volunteers teach choir, bucket band, musicianship, and orchestral instruments three days a week from 5-6pm.  The students perform concerts for the community, do special creative composition projects, and hear from guest artists every semester.  ELEE students also get academic tutoring support from our partner program, East Lake Every Child Taught.