The Little Orchestra Society believes that access to live classical music is a right that should be extended to all members of our community, and that this access is an essential component of understanding our world both past and present.
To support this belief, LOS begins with the youngest generation of New Yorkers by making in-depth, interactive music education possible for large numbers of New York City public school students.
Musical Connections: The School Partnership Program (Musical Connections)
Musical Connections is an in-school music composition residency program that provides music education and concert experiences for students in Grades K-4 in New York City public schools. In 2014-2015 Musical Connections served 56 classes totaling approximately 1,500 students, 70 teachers and 1,600 parents. Each in-school residency included ten classroom instruction sessions led by an experienced LOS teaching artist where students engaged in music making and compositional activities as they learned basic elements of music.
The curriculum encourages students to develop their critical thinking, communication, creativity, and collaboration skills while enjoying the excitement and artistic satisfaction of composing original music in their classrooms. By targeting the youngest public school students, Musical Connections creates the beginning of a lifetime of learning, interest, and understanding of music as students have the opportunity to become both creators and audiences for the arts.
Musical Connections also includes professional development for teachers and teaching artists and engagement for families. In addition to Musical Connections, LOS expanded its music education programming in 2014-15 by launching after-school programs in two New York City public schools.
Live in Concert!
Live In Concert!, LOS’s audience development program, provides tickets free-of-charge to students and families for weekend performances and invites public schools, publicly funded day care centers and social services agencies to weekday dress rehearsals and weekend performances of LOS concerts.
Resource materials are provided to aid teachers and program leaders in preparing students with a goal of enhancing their concert experience. All schools in our Musical Connections program first participate in LOS’s Live in Concert! community engagement program. Once schools have completed one season in that program, they often contact us with the desire to expand their musical knowledge by joining the Musical Connections program.
Project 65Plus The Little Orchestra Society’s senior outreach and continuing education program, distributes tickets free-of-charge to area senior centers to support the Orchestra’s commitment to life-long learning and to help meet the needs of New York City’s growing number of seniors.
On-site pre-concert learning seminars are offered to centers attending performances to enhance their concert-going experience. LOS also works to serve grandparents who are primary caregivers to young children.
I cannot express how grandfamilies feel about attending The Little Orchestra Society concerts. It provides an opportunity that the families would not have been able to afford... The children enjoy seeing and hearing something new and different. The grandparents mentioned that the children would often request lessons on how to play the piano, violin, trumpet or any other musical instruments featured in the concert.
- NYC Department for the Aging, Grandparent Resource Center
The Little Orchestra Society's programs are supported in part by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the New York City Council and Council members Costa Constantinides and Ritchie Torres; and the New York State Council on the Arts, with the generous support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State legislature.