The Austin Symphony: School Programs

Building Blocks

The Building Blocks to the Orchestra program each year introduces over 21,000 children to the instruments of the orchestra through ensemble performances in the schools. Various trios and quartets from the Austin Symphony Orchestra perform in 75 public and private elementary schools in the city and the central Texas area, playing to youngsters in Kindergarten through third grade. For most of the children this program is their very first personal exposure to live instrumental music, particularly symphonic music. Students get a "musician eye view" of string, brass, woodwind, and percussion instruments. A cornerstone for later youth programs, Building Blocks is an important beginning of music appreciation.


The Austin Symphony Orchestra Society became the proud parent of Brooke Elementary School when the Symphony decided to participate in the Austin Adopt-A-School program. In doing so, the Symphony became the first non-profit organization to "Adopt-A-School", which is an Austin in Action Program of the Austin Chamber of Commerce in partnership with the Austin Independent School District (AISD).

Brooke Elementary is AISD’s fine arts magnet elementary school. The school emphasizes and provides an opportunity for all students to participate in and develop an appreciation of the fine arts through their studies in language arts, social studies, math, and science. The Austin Symphony has adopted Brooke in an effort to enhance and expand the school’s music curriculum.

Symphony-AISD Music Gifted Program

The Austin Symphony and AISD have teamed together to give gifted 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students in music the chance to meet and work with real musicians, many of them members of the Austin Symphony. After taking a special test, twenty students from each school are chosen by their music teachers to participate in this program. By the end of the year, students will have been exposed to all aspects of music including the instruments (strings, woodwinds, brass, percussion, and keyboards), choral music, composition, and a career orientation. A unique program that gives children the opportunity to visit with professional musicians in an informal setting!

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