Educational Programs

Ensemble Performances Pizza with the Players Master
Sound Check Card Harmony
Young People's Concerts First Coast
"Porgy and Bess"
Jump Start Strings Instrument
Teacher Discounts


Educational Concerts

Prelude Concerts and Young People’s Concerts bring children to Jacoby Symphony Hall to experience live symphonic music as a catalyst for enhancing academic performance and fostering creativity and social development. The programs feature works especially selected for students in Grades 2 & 3 and Grades 4 & 5, and encourage the students to listen, analyze and creatively describe music. Teachers’ Guides and companion audio CDs outline suggested activities for pre- and post-concert lessons including cross curricular activities. The Teachers’ Guides incorporate curriculum based concepts from Sunshine State Standards, a nationally recognized curriculum initiative used in Florida.

Attendance at these concerts should be considered as early as possible. Tickets are $5 per student with one chaperone free for every 10 paid students. If your class would like to attend one of these concerts please download and fill out the registration form below.


Prelude Concerts

For Students in Grades 2 & 3

Mr. Smith’s Composition - This Prelude concert will inspiringly introduce young listeners to the thrill of classical music through an exploration of instruments from the brass, woodwind, percussion, and string families!  Mr. Smith's Composition takes the audience on a hilarious educational journey into the mind of Mr. Smith as he composes an original symphonic piece. The audience is even drawn into the process by being asked to choose the final ending.  Students will also get to hear an unforgettable performance of the Jacoby Symphony Hall’s pipe organ.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014, 10:00 am & 11:30 am
Thursday, October 16, 2014, 10:00 am & 11:30 am

Friday, October 17, 2014, 10:00 am & 11:30 am

Reservations are required.  Special discounts are available for qualifying schools.  Please ask if you qualify for a discounted rate at the time of reservation.  Tickets are $5 for regular priced schools. 

Click here for a Prelude Concert Registration Form.

Please return form to Tony Kamnikar, Vice President of Education and Community Programs – email:

HOME SCHOOLERS: Tickets may be purchased for the Thursday, October 16 performance at 11:30 am ONLY.





Young People's Concerts

For Students in Grades 4 & 5

The Orchestra Sings - Composers and musicians create melodies, which can be sung or played on instruments. When an orchestra plays these melodies, the orchestra sings. Students will explore melody in a range of colorful orchestral repertoire. They will creatively find the melody by singing, playing recorders and composing original music, culminating in a concert with the J SYM and other Link Up students. Curriculum is from Link Up, a program of the Weill Music Institute at Carnegie Hall.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015 10:00 am & 11:30 am
Wednesday, February 25, 2015 10:00 am (one performance only)

Thursday, February 26, 2015 10:00 am & 11:30 am
Friday, February 27, 2015 10:00 am & 11:30 am

Reservations are required.  Special discounts are available for qualifying schools.  Please ask if you qualify for a discounted rate at the time of reservation.  Tickets are $5 for regular priced schools.

Click here for a Young People's Concert Registration Form.

Please return form to Tony Kamnikar, Vice President of Education and Community Programs – email:


HOME SCHOOLERS: We are at capacity for the Wednesday, February 25 performance at 10 a.m. Please call 904.354.5657 for availability.





Educational Ensemble Performances

Jacksonville Symphony musicians visit local elementary and middle schools and after-school programs. These in-school presentations include musical performances, instrument demonstrations, student participation and question & answer sessions. Although our performances are valued at $600 each, fees are negotiable. Performances are available in the morning or afternoon.

Click here for an Ensemble Concert Registration Form. Available Ensemble Dates are listed on the form.

Please return form to Tony Kamnikar, Vice President of Education and Community Programs - email

First Coast Nutcracker

Through the combination of Tchaikovsky’s engaging music played Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra illustrated with lively choreography, noted guest artists, beautiful costumes and fabulous sets contribute to a grand introduction to classical music and dance for young people and quality entertainment for adults. Four full-length performances will be offered in the Moran Theater at the Times-Union Center for the Performing Arts on December 19, 20 and 21, 2014.

For more information or to purchase tickets, click here to visit JSYM Patron Services or contact by phone at 904.354.5547.

First Coast Nutcracker Educational Performances
Wednesday, December 17, 2014 9:45 am & 11:15 am
Thursday, December 18, 2014 9:45 am & 11:15 am

Students may attend a performance of the first act of the ballet at 9:45am ($6), the second act at 11:15am ($6) or both acts ($10). For reservations, email or call 904.354.4092. Reservation forms are available online at First Coast Nutcracker educational performances will be held in the Moran Theatre of the Times-Union Center for the Performing Arts.

TEACHERS: For Educational performance of First Coast Nutcracker, click to for reservations and information.


Opera-In-Concert - Porgy & Bess

Educator Workshop Day - January 10, 2015

Porgy and Bess Open Rehearsal - Friday, February 6, 2015, Arrival Time: 6:30 pm; Performance Time: 7:00 pm

The Jacksonville Symphony presents Porgy and Bess as an excellent educational tool for your middle and high school students.  George Gershwin’s opera immortalized the culture of “Catfish Row” and gave us classic songs such as “Summertime,” and “It Ain’t Necessarily So.”  The Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra and the all-star cast will present a rare concert performance of Gershwin’s timeless American masterpiece for the music students of Jacksonville. 

Teachers will attend a workshop day on September 13. Teachers will gain the tools to prepare students to help them understand, embrace, enjoy and appreciate the rich culture of Porgy and Bess when they attend the February 6 open rehearsal/performance.

Click here for an Opera Open Rehearsal Registration Form.

Click here for Porgy and Bess Educator Workshop Program Information.

Please return form to Tony Kamnikar, Vice President of Education and Community Programs - email


Pizza with the Players

For students in grades 9 through 12

These post-concert pizza parties provide a unique opportunity for area high school students, who attend select daytime Coffee Concerts.  After the performances students are able to exchange ideas over lunch with the professional J SYM musicians.  Topics include: listening to, analyzing, and describing music; evaluating music and music performances; understanding relationships between music, the other arts, and disciplines outside the arts; and understanding the role of the professional musician in community.  Students “break the ice” for conversation by acting as peer hosts for a round-table discussion with J SYM musicians.

Courtney Lewis Conducts Berlioz
Friday, September 26, 2014 at 11:00 am; arrive by 10:45 am

Sounds of Simon & Garfunkel
Friday, October 10, 2014 at 11:00 am; arrive by 10:45 am

Salute to America
Featuring the United States Naval Academy Men’s Glee Club

Friday, November 7 at 11:00 am, arrive by 10:45 am

Holiday Pops
Friday, December 12, 2014 at 11:00 am; arrive by 10:45 am

Symphonic Romance
Friday, February 13, 2015 at 11:00 am; arrive by 10:45 am

Courtney Lewis Conducts Ades and Haydn
Friday, May 15, 2015 at 11:00 am; arrive by 10:45 am

For every Pizza with the Players event there will be multiple schools present to help create a rich and diverse social and musical experience.  Approximately 100 students will attend each event and we encourage schools to bring 25-50 students.  This event is not limited to music students.  We encourage teachers from every discipline to bring students to this event. 

Click here for a Pizza with the Players Registration Form.

Please return form to Tony Kamnikar, Vice President of Education and Community Programs - email

Master Classes with Guest Soloists

The Jacksonville Symphony presents master classes by world-renowned artists free of charge. The visiting guest artists of the JSYM work with local students in a classroom format. The JSYM collaborates with UNF, JU, JSYO and DCPS.  Past guest artists have included Rachel Barton Pine, Gil Shaham, Arnaldo Cohen and the Canadian Brass. To participate, call (904) 354-5657.

2014-2015 Master Classes - DATES TO BE ANNOUNCED.

Jump Start Strings

The Jacksonville Symphony’s Jump Start Strings program believes in seeking social change through music. Children in first through fifth grade receive string instrument training in three Duval County after-school programs run by Communities in Schools in under-resourced neighborhoods. A team of Jacksonville Symphony musicians provides violin, cello and bass instruction two days per week and Communities in Schools program assistants supervise another practice day. The participating schools are Pickett Elementary, Reynolds Lane Elementary and Woodland Acres Elementary. The Jump Start Strings program was selected by the Jacksonville Business Journal as a 2015 Innovator in Education Award Winner for Education Partnerships.   

If you are interested in participating in this program please contact Peggy Toussant, Jump Start Strings Coordinator, at 904.807.1007 or by email at

Sound Check Card

The Sound Check Card is the student pass to the Jacksonville Symphony. For $25, the Sound Check Card offers student age 25 and under access to Masterworks and Coffee concerts for an entire season. Parents are in the club, too, and can attend with their child for $10. To purchase Sound Check, visit the JSO Box Office or contact by phone at 904-354-5547.

Student Rush Tickets

Students can purchase $10 rush tickets an hour and half before any Masterworks or Coffee concert for $10. Rush tickets are available on a first come, first serve basis and are subject to availability. Students MUST present a valid student ID at the JSO Box Office to purchase tickets. One ticket per person.

Instrument Zoo

The Instrument Zoo is an outreach program provided by volunteers from the Jacksonville Symphony Guild, who visit schools and demonstrate how musical sounds are created. Children have a direct, hand-on experience of trying out a full array of orchestral instruments (strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion) brought by the volunteers. Additionally, the Instrument Zoo is featured in the lobby during the  Family Series pre-concert activities. For information about the Guild's Instrument Zoo, email

Harmony Grants

The Guild of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra recognizes the value and importance of music education in our public schools. To that end, they proudly sponsor the Harmony Grants program to provide funding to public schools in four northeast Florida counties (Duval, Clay, St. Johns, and Nassau) to enhance their music education programs.

Click here for Harmony Grant information and application.

Teacher Ticket Discounts

Teachers receive a 50% discount through J SYM Patron Services for Masterworks and Coffee Concerts. One ticket per teacher. Check for availability by calling 904.354.5547.