Every month is Music in Our Schools Month for music educators, but the month of March is when the National Association for Music Education, or NAfME, chooses to recognize it. NAfME was founded in 1907 as the Music Supervisor’s National Conference. After a few name changes, the conference association settled on National Association for Music Education in September 2011. The association supports over 53,000 music educators and advocates teaching millions of students. Their mission is to support equitable access to music education through advocacy and public policy, professional learning and growth, and research and music teacher education. There are national, state, and local levels that provide support and resources to students, parents, teachers, and administrators. More information on NAfME’s programs can be found at: nafme.org/programs/miosm/
March as Music in Our Schools Month (MIOSM) has been designated for over 30 years and has proven effective in promoting awareness of music programs. This year’s 38th annual MIOSM theme is “Music Is All of Us.” NAfME President Scott R. Sheehan shares, “music [has a] unique way of bringing people together, creating a sense of belonging, and cultivating relationships.” Throughout this month, NAfME-affiliated state music education associations will be holding meetings with state and local elected officials to advocate for music education program funding. You too can participate in advocacy this month through a virtual MIOSM Advocacy Celebration on March 28, 7:00 PM ET. Register here!
Nearly every month Orlando Philharmonic has an educational program for your family to attend. Education is one of the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra’s core values and one of our priorities is to expand the educational programs in our Central Florida community. Each season the Young People’s Concerts invite students from grades 3-5 for a 45-minute musical concert featuring the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra, Opera Orlando, and Orlando Ballet – often being the first introduction some students have to the classical arts. This season our Young People’s Concert 2022 was “Game Overture.”
For our symphony fans ages 3-7, Orlando Philharmonic offers Symphony Storytime, a 30-minute program that brings children’s stories to life with instrumentation and illustrations. There is one last Symphony Storytime this season: Peter Rabbit! Enjoy strings, percussion, trombone, clarinet, and narration to the mischievous adventure story of a rabbit named Peter on April 29-30. Tickets are just $10 and children ages 2 & under are free. More information and tickets can be found at: orlandophil.org/event/peter-rabbit/
OPO Summer Camp is a two-week program for high school level String Students. Our third annual Summer Camp will be held May 30-June 9, 2023. Instructors for this year’s camp include Dr. Mauricio Céspedes, Rimma Bergeron-Langlois, and more of OPO’s finest professional musicians. At the end of each week of the two-week program, there will be a concert held in which students have the opportunity to play side by side with their instructors. Applications and audition materials are due May 5th, 2023. Payment plans and full scholarships are available! More information and applications can be found at: orlandophil.org/opo-summer-camp/
We hope that you find time to celebrate and advocate for Music in Our Schools Month this March. As NAfME declared, Music is All of Us, so your continued support of the arts is always acknowledged and appreciated. There are so many ways to get involved: attend one of OPO’s many concerts this month, donate to the United Arts Campaign, sign up for music lessons or a music summer camp, or register for the virtual MIOSM celebration. Thank you for supporting your Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra this season.