Education Programs

The Southwest Florida Symphony Organization is committed to supporting and encouraging Arts Education in Lee County. The Symphony’s commitment to education is evident through its educational programs which it dedicates nearly $100,000 to annually.

The Symphony is dedicated to providing the very best in educational opportunities for our audience of the future. Youth education programs foster young musicians’ skills and strengthen their appreciation for the symphonic music. Programs are extended to children in Lee, Hendry, Glades and Charlotte counties. For additional information on any educational programs, please call the Symphony Offices at (239) 418-0996.


The Southwest Florida Symphony Youth Orchestra Program is an important educational program of the Southwest Florida Symphony. The YO Program is open to all students of Southwest Florida age 22 and under. Students are auditioned and placed into one of three large ensembles: the Youth Symphony, the Concert Orchestra and the Sinfonietta. In addition to the large ensembles the YO Program offers five chamber ensembles to students. Students are coached by professional Symphony musicians, rehearse weekly and perform in their own concert series.


The Southwest Florida Symphony now offers two in-school ensemble programs – a string quartet and a brass quintet. These 45-minute programs tie in with the fifth grade music curriculum, teaching concepts such as rhythmic and melodic elements, important composers and various musical periods and styles. For information about scheduling your school for an ensemble program, call the Symphony Office at (239) 418-0996.


Cool Classical Concerts for Kids, educational outreach performances. Majors for Minors brings the professional symphony to after school programs and organizations. In recent years the symphony has presented the interactive educational program “Compose Yourself” by James Stephenson. The symphony performed at five ‘spring break’ camps from Bonita Springs to Cape Coral for hundreds of students. This season the symphony will continue to reach out to after school programs, Boys and Girls Clubs and other organizations.


The Young People’s Concerts are given to 5th grade public, private, charter and home school students of Lee County as an integral part of the Symphony’s education outreach. The concerts are supplemented with a curriculum given to the 5th grade music teachers as preparatory instruction. In recent years the Southwest Florida Symphony presented the program “Bach to the Future” for 2,300 students at Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall at FSW. For many students, it is the first time they hear live orchestral music.

The Young People’s Concert for 2017 was held on May 18 under the direction of Dr. David Cole. Please consider giving to this worthwhile endeavor. Your gift or sponsorship can help us bring an orchestral experience to 3,500 students of Lee County.


There are four scholarships or competitions run by the Symphony Society: the Jillian Prescott Music Awards, the Van Sickle Vocal Scholarship Competition, the Symphony Society Scholarships and the John Hudson Scholarship.

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