Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic
The Mission of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic is to present live symphonic performances and music education at the highest level of artistic excellence, enriching and engaging the people of our region.
Your donation will help us with our mission.
There is a moment at the beginning of every great musical performance, when the lights have gone down and the music swells with the first few notes of the music. That moment where your breath stops for just a second as the full sound of the orchestra washes over you, allowing you to appreciate the full glory of the work as the composer intended it. No CD, no iPod, not even the finest home stereo can capture the experience of a live orchestra performing the work of music’s masters.
The NEPA Philharmonic’s Masterworks Series is the cornerstone of our annual programming. Our most traditional series, each concert requires three or more rehearsals and employs an large number musicians. Musical selections are made about a year in advance, then purchased or rented and prepared for performance by our Librarian. The Orchestra’s Personnel Manager contracts musicians throughout the year before the series begins in the Fall.
Since you’re reading this description, we’ll assume for the moment that you’re already familiar with the formal side of orchestral music, the tuxedo and gown sorts of performances of the masters’ works that have been going on in music halls for centuries. But there’s another side to classical music, the jeans and t-shirt type of orchestral music you’ll find in the theme to The Simpsons, in a commercial for Detroit’s hottest new convertible, in the Jazz clubs of New Orleans, or in your kids’ favorite animated adventure. The modern versions of classical music that make you wonder; if Vivaldi were around today, would he be sitting at Starbucks, listening to his iPod while emailing a Hollywood director about scoring the next big summer blockbuster? Would Rachmaninoff be collaborating with Cirque du Soleil, or the latest Celine Dion show in Vegas? Would Tchaikovsky compose for The Apprentice: The Musical?
The NEPA Philharmonic celebrates classical orchestral music’s relevance to pop culture on our Pops Series. Each year, our Pops concerts delight audiences with the irresistible, toe-tapping, finger snapping, POP-ular works we know and love. This season, our Pops series takes us on a journey from great movie themes, through the bright lights of Broadway, to jazz clubs of the swing era. Your sponsorship would provide a portion of the artistic and production costs that make this series possible. We invite you to join us in our celebration of these modern classics- no jacket required.
The holiday season is a time for celebrations with family and friends and a once-a-year opportunity to experience some of the performing arts’ greatest traditions. Whether you’re bundling up for a night of caroling, donning your holiday best for the Nutcracker, attending a school holiday play or just listening to your favorite holiday CDs, no time of the year is more closely tied to the arts than the holiday season. The NEPA Philharmonic celebrates the connection between the performing arts and the holidays with our annual “Home for the Holidays” Concerts, a time-honored tradition in Northeast Pennsylvania for more than 30 years. Deck the halls with the live symphonic music of the Philharmonic, accompanied by the Ballet Northeast, the Symphonic Chorus, the Kantorei (children’s) Choir of the Choral Society of Northeast Pennsylvania, and the Ballet Theater of Scranton.
Crescendo Family Concert
From our earliest days, even before birth, we respond to music. Studies suggest that a baby will respond to sound by the beginning of the third trimester and can distinguish different types of music by the middle of the third trimester. As children, exposure to different types of music can aid in cognitive and language skills development, with particular promise for non-English speaking students or those from lower socio-economic environments struggling with language difficulties. An appreciation of music permeates every academic discipline, from the math inherent in notes and measures to the science of the sound produced by musical instruments or the language of an Italian aria.
Today’s children can easily identify the latest hits of the hot pop stars of the moment, but few have had exposure to classical music and instruments. In most of our schools, budget cuts have stripped music education with little left beyond the occasional instrument lesson for a marching band member. As people who love music, we have an opportunity to make the study and appreciation of music relevant for our young people.
With our Annual Family Concert, Crescendo, the NEPA Philharmonic has created a family-focused event highlighting our partnerships with regional arts, cultural and educational organizations. Before the event, children can access a specially designed interactive area of the web site with educational activities tailored to their upcoming event experience. This area of our web site is compliant with Pennsylvania state standards for music education and can be used by parents or educators as an opportunity for learning and exploration in the weeks leading up to the event.
Young People’s Concerts
There is a wonderful moment of discovery in the life of most young children when they realize that they can make music. Banging on a stock pot with a wooden spoon, rhythmically smacking a book on the coffee table, or making a song out of a just-learned word, there’s that moment of bliss when the child realizes they can create sounds. The stockpot-banging may be somewhat less blissful for a parent of a toddler in their terrible twos, but these musical discoveries present an opportunity to encourage a lifelong interest in music and the arts. At one time, some form of music education was offered in most schools, providing children an opportunity to build on this natural interest in music, but cutbacks in funding for arts education have severely limited access to this type of curriculum.
The NEPA Philharmonic’s Young People’s Concerts provide a unique opportunity for children in grades 3 through 6 to explore classical music as part of their educational curriculum. Each year, the Philharmonic presents four youth-oriented live concerts with coordinating classroom materials to over 6,000 students in 62 area schools. Participating schools receive study booklets and CDs that present background information on the music and composers in a fun and age appropriate format, while the CD presents excepts of the upcoming concert’s music with a “play-by-play” commentary by our Music Director and Conductor, Larry Loh.
Our Young People’s Concerts are one of several regional educational and outreach programs we offer each year. The curriculum is developed in partnership with local Intermediate Units, individual schools, and teachers, and offered to schools in eight counties encompassing a 75-mile radius. Pre-performance surveys and program evaluations allow us to review these programs as needed in an effort to enhance our public service goals. We are pleased to expand our program this year to children in local Home School Programs in recognition of the demand for educational arts programming outside the traditional classroom setting.