LSO Discovery Family Workshops

LSO Discovery Family Workshops

Family Events

For All Generations

At the LSO, our ambitions for families are no different from those for all potential audiences: we want to share the joy of great music with the biggest and most diverse range of people, making accessibility as important as quality. And we want to challenge preconceptions about classical music – who it’s for, what its purpose is – encouraging it to be viewed as a viable, go-to leisure option, up there with the cinema, museums and sporting events. So why are we seeking to attract families in particular?

We believe that to positively influence the musicians and music-lovers of tomorrow, we must actively engage with the families of today. The LSO has for the last 23 years led the field in terms of music education and outreach, with its wide-reaching LSO Discovery programme. Connecting with families is an important part of LSO Discovery – we operate workshops and story-telling concerts for under-5s and their parents at LSO St Luke’s, host full orchestral performances for 7- to 12-year-olds and their relatives at the Barbican, and enable LSO players to make family hospital visits around 60 times a year.

A recent national collaborative project – the Family Arts Campaign – has been a catalyst for the LSO to raise its game yet further. The campaign, led by the visual and performing arts sectors, seeks to boost levels of arts engagement across generations by increasing the amount and range of content available, raising the quality of experience, and improving marketing. Through sharing of best practice, the LSO has been able to hone its communications to ensure families feel welcome long before they attend an event. For example, a young family may well be as concerned about parking and baby changing facilities as with which composers are on the bill. Providing practical, relevant information, adopting an inclusive and reassuring tone, and allowing plenty of space for feedback is now an integrated part of the LSO’s service.

The campaign also prompted the LSO to join with community partners the Barbican, Museum of London and others to form a local family arts steering group. In October half term 2013, the campaign presented a united public front in the form of a fortnight-long Family Arts Festival. It was a great success and will be repeated in autumn 2014 with the LSO presenting a flagship event. LSO in Wartime: Create an Opera in a Day is an interactive project for families, tied to the Orchestra’s wider World War I centenary commemorative activity.

‘Family’ is a catch-all term and no two are alike, particularly in an age of increasingly non-nuclear set-ups. From local single parent families whomay have never phoned a box office before, to ‘Culture Vultures’ who adore theatre but haven’t tried music, the LSO strives to be flexible enough to provide entry points for all variations of families. Because ultimately, all families have one thing in common: the need to bond over shared extraordinary experiences.

> Find out more about LSO family events

Events for Families

LSO Discovery: Free Lunchtime Concerts
at LSO St Luke's

Fri 5 Sep; 17 & 31 Oct; 21 Nov 2014;
30 Jan; 13 & 27 Feb; 13 Mar; 1 & 22 May;
12 & 26 Jun 2015
Suitable for Over 5s

Sat 1 Nov 2014, LSO St Luke's
LSO Discovery Family Day: LSO in Wartime
Create an Opera in a Day
As the LSO plays its part in World War I commemorations with a Sally Beamish world premiere, join us the day before for a creative day for families with children aged 8 to 11. Take part in workshops exploring London in wartime and discover what happened to the LSO (founded in 1904) between 1914 and 1918, all the while working towards creating a mini-opera with LSO musicians and special guests.
Suitable for 8- to 11-year-olds

> Sun 9 Nov 2014
LSO Discovery Family Concert
Suitable for 7-to-12 year olds

> Sun 8 Feb 2015
LSO Discovery Family Concert
Suitable for 7-to-12 year olds

> Sun 26 Apr 2015
LSO Discovery Family Concert
Suitable for 7-to-12 year olds

> Thu 25 Jun 2015
Rites of Passage
Participants of LSO On Track, the orchestra for young musicians from across East London, plus other LSO Discovery projects, present their annual performance at the Barbican.

> Sun 5 Jul 2015
JONATHAN DOVE The Monster in the Maze: a new opera for children (UK premiere)
WALTON Symphony No 1
Sir Simon Rattle conductor
LSO Youth Choir
LSO Community Choir
London Symphony Orchestra
Alasdair Middleton libretto
Suitable for over-11s

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