© 2014/15 HSO  |  800 Corporate Circle, Suite 101, Harrisburg, PA 17110  |  (717) 545-5527  |  info@HarrisburgSymphony.org
Musician photos by Carl Socolow Photography
Musical Chairs Program

The goal of Musical Chairs is to grow and expand our young audiences at the Masterworks concert series.  At the HSO, we believe that an appreciation for classical music begins early by experiencing live concert performances.

The Musical Chairs program makes a Masterworks subscription of seven concerts affordable for families with students in grades kindergarten through 12th grade.  Participants attend the full Masterworks series (7 performances between October and May) accompanied by parents or teachers, at the low cost of $42.00 per person.

Sitting in seating areas 101, 102, 103, or 209, at the beautiful Forum auditorium affords students and their families or mentors with a choice of seating options and a great vantage point to experience our wonderful HSO.

For just $42 per subscription, all students and accompanying adults are able to attend ALL SEVEN Masterworks concerts. Musical Chairs families must complete an application for program consideration.

Download a Musical Chairs application here.

Welcome to the Concert

The HSO’s Education Committee provides a pre-concert program called Welcome to the Concert 45 minutes prior to every HSO Masterworks concert. Past season have engaged young people in passports and color wheels, tying in with the theme of the HSO season. See what's instore for the 20154/16 Season here.

HSO Young Person’s Concerts
The Harrisburg Symphony presents two pairs of Young Person’s Concerts each season, normally one in the fall and one in the spring.  The programs are designed for students in grades 3-8 who come to the Forum in downtown Harrisburg from all over the capital region and beyond.  School groups arrive at the Forum by bus, by van, by car, and on foot to participate in one of two 45-minute performances.  Maestro Stuart Malina hosts these concerts, which feature excerpts from the upcoming weekend’s Masterworks program.

In the days and weeks prior to the concert, students and their teachers or parents prepare for the performance by utilizing materials provided by the Harrisburg Symphony’s Education Department.  The materials offer information on the composer(s), the music and other music-related ideas.  Each of the Young Person’s Concert performances and the pre-concert materials are geared to assist instructors in meeting the requirements of the National and Pennsylvania Music Standards.

An estimated 7000 students experience a Young Person’s Concert each season.

For 2013/14, the Harrisburg Symphony is delighted to announce sponsors of the Young Person’s Concerts: 

Penn National Insurance

The Children’s Home Foundation

The Elizabeth and Guy Holmes Foundation

Harrisburg Symphony Youth Orchestras (HSYO)

The entity known as Harrisburg Symphony Youth Orchestras is comprised of two ensembles under HSYOs Music Director, Gregory Woodbridge.  Mr. Woodbridge, who also serves as the Assistant Conductor of the Harrisburg Symphony, conducts the HSYO, a full orchestral ensemble comprised of top student musicians in grades 9 – 12 from the Central Pennsylvania area.  Mrs. Krista Kriel is the conductor of the Junior Youth String Orchestra, a strings-only ensemble of students in grades 6 – 9.

Since its inception in 1953, the orchestra has been an integral educational part of the Harrisburg Symphony Association.  One of the oldest youth symphonies in the country, its membership of approximately 85 musicians represents the finest from public, private, and home-school institutions in the Central Pennsylvania area.  Approximately one-third of HSYO graduates will continue as music majors at the college and conservatory level.  Many will continue to play in college and community orchestras.  Presently, Harrisburg Symphony Youth Orchestra graduates are performing in the Harrisburg, Dallas, Chicago, Houston Opera and Cincinnati Symphony Orchestras, and in regional orchestras throughout the United States.

Both Harrisburg Symphony Youth Orchestra ensembles, the HSYO and the JYSO, perform together in three major concerts, a festive holiday “Play-A-Thon”, and other concerts throughout the season.  In 2014-15 the HSYO will perform together with the JYSO at the Forum in downtown Harrisburg on Monday, November 17, 2014 at 7:00 pm; on Monday, February 23, 2015 at 7:00 pm; and on Sunday, May 10, 2015 at 3:00 pm.  The Play-A-Thon takes place on Saturday, December 13, 2014 at Strawberry Square in downtown Harrisburg.

Note:  Visit the Youth Symphony webpage HSYO.org for detailed information regarding HSYO Auditions and other pertinent information.

Master Classes – With Harrisburg Symphony Master Classes, students of all ages and abilities receive the chance to step into the studio of some of the top performers in the world of classical music.  Led by HSO musicians and featured soloists, the interactive format of a Master Class brings a new level of understanding to both the students on stage and observers in the audience.  Past Master Classes have included HSO principal musicians, Julius Wirth (viola), Phil Snedecor (trumpet), Fiona Thompson (cello) and HSO guest soloists Andrew von Oeyen (piano) and Time for Three Double Bass player, Ranaan Meyer.

Classical Conversations (Pre-Concert Lectures) – Informative 30-minute talks by noted music authorities give listeners an in-depth presentation providing a pathway into the music on each Masterworks program.  The ‘conversations’ start one hour prior to each Masterworks performance in the Forum.  Guest lecturers are normally stationed at the front of section 208 inside the concert hall.

Post-Concert “Talk-Backs” – Maestro Malina is joined by musicians from the orchestra and other concert participants for an informal, free-wheeling Q &A session with the audience, immediately following each Masterworks performance.

The Harrisburg Symphony produces and presents several educational and youth-oriented activities that reach thousands of people each season. The planning and execution of these activities are the responsibility of Education Director, Mark Hunsberger, and the Harrisburg Symphony Education Committee, which is comprised of HSO Board members and other dedicated community volunteers. Some of the ongoing educational activities include:
The 2015/16 Schedule of Harrisburg Symphony Young Person’s Concerts:

Friday, November 13, 2015    TBD    10:00 am* and 11:30 am performances

Friday, May 13, 2016     Link Up: The Orchestra Rocks     10:00 am* and 11:30 am performances

*Please note that the 10:00 am performance is reserved for students, teachers, and chaperones travelling by bus to the Forum for the Young Person’s Concert.  Please call the HSO for special arrangements.  717-612-4965.
You may register NOW on-line for both the November 2014 and the May 2015 Young Person’s Concerts.
Musicians in the Schools – Taking the professional musicians of the Harrisburg Symphony into area public and private schools provides a dynamic presentation that involves music clinics, artists-in-residence, and direct musician to student mentoring.  These presentations sometimes involve a one-time event and sometimes repeated visits that develop ongoing relationships between the students and the musicians.  Examples of previous visits to the schools include the HSO’s “100 Musicians Playing” where solo musicians and group ensembles visit various schools all on one day.  Eric Henry and the Hot House Jazz Band visited Nye Elementary in the Lower Dauphin School District for a rollicking all-school assembly while Harp player, Rebecca Kauffman and Flute Player, Mary Hannigan (also known as Espirit!) demonstrated and played their instruments while telling about the fascinating history of how these two very old instruments came to be for  students in the Camp Hill School District.  The Education Department welcomes ideas for new ways to bring together students and our professional orchestra members in meaningful musical engagement activities.