RSO in Schools
Each year, through the RSO in Schools program, Regina Symphony Orchestra musicians visit schools to offer an engaging and educational musical presentation. Students experience live orchestral music, interact with musicians, ask questions, and have fun while learning.
The goals of the RSO in Schools program are:
- To introduce students to orchestral artistic expression
- To contextualize and enhance ideas already taught in class
- Exploration of identity, culture, and different perspectives through music
- Meet the outcomes of the Saskatchewan Ministry of Education
- To teach music literacy
Li’l Shadd A Story of Ujima chronicles one of Saskatchewan’s first settlers of African descent, Dr. Alfred Schmitz Shadd. Through this story, students will learn about compassion, and the philosophy of social responsibility the led Dr. Shadd to become an engaged citizen. The concert features music by composers of African descent, performed by the Regina Symphony Chamber Players. The story is narrated by Sharon-Ann Brown and features a performance by singer & drummer, Jeff Cappo, This education program includes the concert, which is available for online streaming, as well as a teacher’s guide with detailed background on the story, activities and information the contributions Black composers have made to classical music.
In 2020-21 the RSO presented a virtual performance of “The Crow’s Prophecy”. This performance is available for free including a teachers’ guide with activities and tools for further learning.
The Crow’s Prophecy, written by RSO principal flute Marie-Noelle Berthelet, demonstrates how music can tell stories, express ideas, and share emotions. Through a series of activities and demonstrations, these ideas are consolidated through the telling of The Crow’s Prophecy. This is the make-believe story of how principal oboe, Tamsin Johnson, began playing the oboe.
In 2022, the RSO has two virtual performances planned – one for high school students and one for elementary schools.
“Enough is Enough” is a powerful 30-minute performance tailored to Saskatchewan Ministry of Education learning outcomes in Social Studies, Music, and English Language Arts for grades 8-12. Cree-Dene-Métis spoken word poet, Zoey Roy, composer/arranger Juliet Palmer, and producer Omar Ballantyne form a powerhouse collaboration with the RSO to create poetry, music, and accompanying teaching materials reflecting on the prairie provinces, history, identity, and Indigenous voices.
Grassland was recorded and performed in Regina in February 2023.
Award-winning environmental music composer, Matthew Burtner, created a major new work for the Regina Symphony Orchestra under the Direction of Gordon Gerrard. The new piece was composed for the Regina Symphony and the Saskatchewan environment, bringing the landscape of shifting winds and grasses into dialog with the human sonic imagination. The music includes recorded sounds of the prairie environment such as wind, grass, and water which the musicians enhance, imitate, and develops throughout the piece. This project allows students to explore orchestral artistic expression that is connected to the world they live in while also providing a global perspective. Students will have the opportunity to explore the intersections of science, music, and culture.