05 Oct 2020

Ghost Light PodcastEpisode 5.3 – USUO Education Team discuss the USUO education offerings

In a typical year, the education offerings of the Utah Symphony comprise close to a third of the overall performances for the season. Between road trips to rural communities and the yearly 5th grade afternoon concerts where students are bussed in to Abravanel Hall for a special performance, thousands of elementary school children get to hear the Utah Symphony every year. The Utah Opera resident artists would have already crisscrossed the state bringing opera to rural, suburban, and urban schools in Utah.

Restrictions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic have caused the USUO education offerings to undergo a pivot. For the Symphony, the team envisioned a way to highlight the instrument families and record each instrument to help children get to know the instruments better. The common thematic theme in the narrative of the virtual program is music that expresses a specific mood or feeling. As children hear how well music can capture a mood they will also learn that music is a powerful tool to help manage emotions. The Opera produced a video, staged in the production studio and Capitol Theatre, featuring the resident artists performing their Opera education program.

For both sides of the company, the education team is working with education partners around the state to bring these programs to students along with a live Q&A with musicians following the video presentation.

It is the hope of the education team that there is an unseen benefit in the current performance/audience restrictions. The need to fulfill our mandate to provide quality music and music education to students in the state has brought about a necessity for creativity and innovation in our offerings.