Toronto Symphony Presents Young People's Concert Series - Toronto Teacher Mom

Toronto Symphony Presents Young People's Concert Series

Thursday, November 06, 2014


As one of Canada's longest-standing symphonic ensembles, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra has been offering programs for young people for the past 90 years. With the goal of inspiring a love of classical music in children and their families, the TSO welcomes over 80,000 children each season as part of their curriculum-based education programs. The TSO is a not-for-profit, charitable organization that boasts an incredible roster of 88 musicians which include acclaimed solo and chamber music artists and teachers in music faculties from across the continent. Established in the second season in 1924/1925, the TSO Young People's Concerts showcase classical music to children aged 2 to 12 in a way that is simple and fun.

Photo courtesy of Rachel McCaig Photography

As guests of the TSO, my son and I recently attended the Symphonic Spooks concert and joined families as well as musicians donning Halloween costumes as we listened to classic pieces by Andrew Lloyd Webber, Edvard Grieg, John Williams and more. My favourite was performed by Waldo, er, I mean, David Simon who played the extraordinary and unmistakeable theme from The Phantom of the Opera. It sent shivers up my spine, it was so beautiful!


The conductor that evening was Francesco Lecce-Chong who provided a brief introduction to each piece and encouraged audience members to join in a little dance during the "Dem Bones" number. Also performing on stage were the Tha Spot Halloween Dancers who were absolutely adorable.

Tha Spot Halloween Dancers: Chloe Andrade, Celina Ferrair, Bianca Gaetano, Raquel Perri, Amyah Richardson

The Young People's Concert Series includes five one-hour concerts on Saturday afternoons at Roy Thomson Hall. The length is perfect for restless children and given that the audience is full of families with young children, there's no need to worry as much if your child makes a noise during the show. This season, in addition to Symphonic Spooks, the TSO offers the following concerts:
  • Pianorama - As part of the TSO’s Piano Extravaganza, GRAMMY® Award-winning pianist Emanuel Ax and the Orchestra will be joined by young pianists from around Toronto to perform Saint-Saëns’s playful piece, The Carnival of the Animals, and other thrilling selections. TSO Music Director Peter Oundjian will conduct.
  • Shake, Rattle & Roll -The Toronto Symphony Orchestra is joined by the Toronto-based, electrifying percussion ensemble TorQ for an exciting programme of orchestral favourites, including Bernstein’s “Mambo” from West Side Story and Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture. Come experience the powerful percussion family—from the tambourine to the timpani!
  • Pan Am Beats, Heroic Feats! - As Toronto prepares to host the 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games, our Canadian athletes are in peak physical shape, and the musicians in the orchestra have also been in training. Join Platypus Theatre and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra as they come together to unravel a musical mystery that highlights the Pan American culture we will be experiencing in Toronto! This production is a TSO Co-Commission.
Be sure to arrive at the concert half an hour early for a special pre-concert performance in the lobby!

Tickets for the Young People's Concert Series range from $20-$32 and can be purchased online at TSO.ca, over the phone at 416-598-3375 or in-person at the TSO Customer Service Centre on King St. Parking is available underground but it's an old low-ceiling lot so it was quite a feat maneouvering my Jeep Wrangler around sharp corners. If you want to avoid underground parking, there are several parking lots in the vicinity.

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26 COMMENTS

  1. So great that they are putting shows on geared at young people! Will have to let some of my friends in the Toronto area know about this! (Judy Cowan)

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    1. It was very well tailored to the younger crowd. My son loved it.

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  2. love that they are helping children learn the love of music. I bet the dancers were so cute.

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  3. What a wonderful series for young people! I love the symphony, but usually only get to see them once a year!

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    1. This was my first symphony and I really enjoyed it, surprisingly. Definitely won't be my last.

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  4. This is awesome! Great to see something geared towards younger aged kids. :)

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  5. I think it's fabulous this style of music is gearing itself towards our younger generation. I've never been a real fan of symphony but to be honest, I also wasn't exposed to it as a child, which is important.

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  6. I loved attending these concerts when I lived in TO. They showcased amazing young talents.

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  7. This is such a great event and supporting local talent!

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  8. What an important experience for your son. Music was such a huge part of my childhood & I believe it kept me out of trouble as a teenager.

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  9. Wow I've never been to one of these but looks like it was a lot of fun. Music was a huge part of my life growing up and I think it's important to expose our kids to classical music.

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  10. Very neat! Will have to see if we have something like this nearby!

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  11. An early introduction to the arts creates a pastime for years

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  12. I miss performances/events like this, one of the things I miss most about living in T.O.

    Oh and I got to perform on the stage at Roy Thomson Hall twice. It was awesome!

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  13. My daughter plays violin..we love the symphony!

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  14. It is important to expose children to a variety of experiences. Live theatre and live music should be accessible to all kids and I am happy when i hear of ones which bring in school groups and those whom otherwise could not afford it.

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  15. My son is in a special needs class & every year they go see live symphony music at our local concert hall. It engages the students because music is universally moving & is an important life experience.

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  16. What we invest in our kids is what we will eventually reap in the future. Music at any age is the greatest gift/experience. My son is taking guitar lessons - he just loves it. Says "Mom this is what I am meant to do" - next Bryan Adams ? Who knows. Children who are moved by this specific experience will tend to revel in music in their adulthood. Looks like you both enjoyed this musical rhapsody immensely. Applaud your vision.

    Eva Mitton-Urban

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  17. what an awesome learning experience for you son!

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  18. This sounds so great!!

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  19. Fantastic, I wish this would come to my city for the kiddos

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  20. I have been wanting to go to the symphony. It is something I want to experience..

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  21. Nothing like going to listen a symphony that makes me appreciate music of all sorts

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