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The Philadelphia Orchestra’s Jane H. Kesson School Concert Program is the ideal way to expose students in grades 3–5 to the exciting and powerful art form of orchestral music. School Concerts familiarize students with the environment and traditions of a concert hall, equip them with fundamental musical vocabulary, and cultivate a lifelong interest in classical music.
The Philadelphia Orchestra will offer a Virtual School Concert experience with unique distance learning materials. This virtual experience will be in place of our in-person school concerts that usually take place in the spring, to ensure students and teachers can experience the orchestra from the safety of their homes and/or classrooms during these uncertain times. In order to receive access to the preparation materials and other updates, please fill out a registration form:
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Established in 2008 with an extraordinary donation from legendary singer-songwriter Billy Joel, the Billy Joel Fund for Music Education is earmarked to support and augment music education in the School District of Philadelphia. The Fund subsidizes tickets and transportation, allowing School District of Philadelphia Schools to receive 73 tickets and bus transportation to a School Concert each year.
To receive tickets and busing, schools and their music teachers must commit to attending a Teacher Workshop, devoting instructional time for preparation and reflection, and completing post-concert evaluation surveys. Please note that eligibility for the program is limited to elementary and middle schools within the School District of Philadelphia only.
Jane H. Kesson (1926–2017) was a Philadelphia Orchestra patron since the age of 12. She went on to become a music educator for 45 years, teaching grades K-12 in public schools. During her career, and even in retirement, she brought hundreds of students to Orchestra concerts each year. In recognition of her extraordinary bequest, the Orchestra renamed its School Concert Program in honor of Miss Kesson in October 2018.
The Jane H. Kesson School Concert Program is funded in part by the Annenberg Foundation, the Stan and Jan Berenstain Healthy Kids Foundation, Brown Brothers Harriman & Co., the Julius and Ray Charlestein Foundation in memory of Morton and Malvina Charlestein, the Connelly Foundation, Donald E. Barb, Esq. and the Rev. Bruce H. Davidson, the Dolfinger-McMahon Foundation, the Christian Humann Foundation, JKG Florida Business Corporation, the Billy Joel Fund for Music Education, Lincoln Financial Group Foundation, the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Foundation, Philadelphia Insurance Co., Linda S. Rothermel, the Ethel Sergeant Clark Smith Memorial Fund, the Volunteer Committees for The Philadelphia Orchestra, and an anonymous donor.
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