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Going Back to School

April is the time for our semi-annual in-school concerts


Artis—Naples Student Education

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As the calendar of orchestra concerts winds down for the season, it doesn’t mean the members of the Naples Philharmonic are reaching fewer people in our community. Instead, the orchestra members are broadening their reach. April is the time for our semi-annual in-school concerts and teaching series. This month, students from 20 schools, plus the Boys and Girls Club of Collier County, will spend time hearing from orchestra musicians on their own campuses.

Being active in Collier County Public Schools isn’t anything new for the Naples Philharmonic, which did educational programs from the first season in the early 1980s. But since the 2013-14 season, efforts have been increased to get as many musicians into local schools as possible for performances, Q&A sessions and hands-on teaching. Those efforts enrich the lives of the students reached and the musicians themselves.

“I personally really enjoy the up-close-and-personal moments with the students,” says violinist Jennifer Kozbial Posadas. “They get to hear the music and then really just talk with us about what life is like as a professional musician.”

Jennifer is performing in middle schools this month with a string quartet. She, along with violist Glenn Loontjens, fellow violin Marlena Chow and cellist Susan Bergeron, will play music from Haydn, Mozart, Brahms and Ravel. Often before a piece starts they’ll chat with the students about sounds and technique, say tremolo or pizzicato, so that the audience can be watching and listening to better understand.

“You’ll hear the rustling in the seats when you get to that point,” Jennifer says. “Then you know they have recognized it.”

While many of the sessions just involve performance and questions, more musicians are using these sessions to teach technique to orchestra students. Assistant Principal Viola Lisa Mattson plans to jump right in with some of the local middle school string students. The experience is important to her because it’s how she started out as a musician too.

“I started playing the viola in fourth grade because of a school program,” Lisa says. “I probably would never have ended up playing an instrument except for that. So to have the opportunity to go into the middle school where the majority of the students are just starting to learn their instruments is really exciting. It’s fun to see kids excited about music.”

The goal, from Jennifer’s perspective, isn’t to only inspire the students to participate in music now, but to be appreciators for a lifetime.

“We want to enrich their whole lives,” she says. “We hope we will see these students in the audience for our concerts for years to come. If that happens, then we’ve really done our part.”

Where musicians will be visiting:

Avalon Elementary
Estates Elementary
Golden Gate Elementary
Manatee Elementary
Osceola Elementary
Parkside Elementary
Pelican Marsh Elementary
Pinecrest Elementary
Seagate Elementary
Tommie Barfield Elementary
Veterans Memorial Elementary
Golden Gate High School
Gulf Coast High School
Palmetto Ridge High School
Cypress Palm Middle School
East Naples Middle School
Gulfview Middle School
North Naples Middle School
Oakridge Middle School
Pine Ridge Middle School
Boys and Girls Club of Collier County

Repertoire includes music from:

and more!

April 6, 2016

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