Education Outreach Programs
Education Programs That Work
The Southwest Michigan Symphony Orchestra offers our community a
world-class series of educational programs for all ages.
Your contributions make these programs possible
Lake Michigan Youth Orchestra
The Lake Michigan Youth Orchestra (LMYO) is the premier extracurricular music and orchestral experience for students grade 4 through college. Under the direction of Burke Lokey, more than 140 talented young musicians perform in the orchestra.
Young People’s Concert
The Young People’s Concert attracts over 3,000 elementary and middle school children. Symphony docents, in conjunction with their music teachers, prepare the children for the concert through the use of workbooks, video tapes and CDs.
Inside the Music
Inside the Music is a visionary pursuit aimed at capturing the hearts and minds of young students through engagement in music education. It is an educational program geared towards students who either have a basic knowledge of music performance, as well as those who would like to develop a basic understanding. There are two components to the program: Masterclasses and Musicians-in-Schools.
Professional musicians are brought in from across the country to conduct master classes to an audience of k-12 grade and college students. Each master class is split into three segments: firstly, a lecture on the theme of sound and music; secondly, a performance by the musician(s); and thirdly, a Q&A discussion between the musician(s) and the students. Master classes are equally beneficial to the musicians as well as the students, as all are sure to discover something new.
Musicians-in-Schools is a collaborative venture between the Symphony and the Berrien Regional Education Service Agency (RESA) . MIS endeavors to engage students by bringing musicians into classrooms for a hands-on learning experience.
The Side-by-Side concert brings the Lake Michigan Youth Orchestra on stage together with the professional musicians of the Southwest Michigan Symphony. These young musicians take their places next to Orchestra members for two rehearsals and a Symphony concert.
Concert goers who attend our Pre-Concert Conversations have a rare opportunity to hear and learn first-hand about the music they are about to hear from our conductor and the guest artists who will be performing. Presented before each concert, the Pre-Concert Conversations provide an insight into the life and times of the composers, the context of the music and hints of what to listen for all intended to offer added enjoyment of the concert.