SOURCE: San Francisco Symphony Keeping Score

June 27, 2005 08:00 ET

San Francisco Symphony Launches Keeping Score Education Pilot Program in Fresno for 2005-06 School Year

Trains K-12 Teachers How to Integrate Music Education Into Core Subjects

SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- June 27, 2005 -- John Goldman, president of the San Francisco Symphony (SFS), today announced the launch of the education component of Keeping Score: MTT on Music, a program to further education through the arts in K-12 classrooms. Part of the SFS's groundbreaking $23 million multimedia effort aimed at providing a connection to classical music and the powerful emotions it conveys, the Keeping Score education program trains teachers to integrate music effectively into their teaching and into core subjects such as science, math, English, history and social studies. Fresno, California has been selected as the pilot program site, and 20 Fresno area teachers begin training this summer in San Francisco's Davies Symphony Hall to incorporate music education into their classroom curriculum throughout the 2005-06 school year.

"The San Francisco Symphony is dedicated to the history, tradition and emotional human connection of classical music," said Goldman. "Keeping Score will help enrich the lives of young people by infusing their core studies with classical music. Exposing students to the power and passion of this type of music will plant the seed of appreciation for the arts for the rest of their lives."

The SFS introduced Keeping Score on national television in June 2004 as part of a nationwide initiative aimed at providing audiences with a connection to classical music. The Keeping Score education component is the next step in the program designed to provide students in California and across the country with a broader understanding of and access to classical music.

"We are delighted to partner with the San Francisco Symphony on Keeping Score," said Dr. Peter G. Mehas, Fresno County Superintendent of Schools. "The Fresno community has a strong commitment to the arts and Keeping Score provides us with valuable resources to bring additional arts education into our classrooms. It is an honor to be selected as the pilot site for Keeping Score."

Participating teachers will be trained by San Francisco Symphony educational staff, SFS musicians, and a variety of arts educators, and will receive professional development training and assistance throughout the school year. Twenty teachers from Fresno gather at Davies Symphony Hall during the week of June 27, 2005, to begin Keeping Score training. During this week, they will learn how to integrate music and musical concepts into their everyday lesson plans, through workshops on music history, American folk and cowboy roots of classical music, score reading, musical presentations, lesson plan development and ideas for integration with current standards. With funding for the arts at an all-time low, the San Francisco Symphony through Keeping Score, provides a much-needed service to students, schools and communities.

The San Francisco Symphony has selected Fresno as the site for the Keeping Score pilot education program because of its uniquely diverse community eager for music education. The Keeping Score education program will also engage the greater Fresno community through its relationships with schools, arts organizations and community leaders to form partnerships and bring populations together around arts experiences.

Keeping Score education program to expand regionally and nationally

In the second year of the program, the San Francisco Symphony plans to expand Keeping Score to include 25 additional teachers in Fresno, launch a second program site in California and add a national location to be determined. The pilot program is the first year of a five-year initiative. By the end of the five-year period, the San Francisco Symphony plans to have four sites operating in California and three nationally. In five years, the Keeping Score education program will reach as many as 500 teachers and more than 75,000 students who otherwise might not be exposed to classical music and the arts as part of their daily learning.

Beyond the first five years, the San Francisco Symphony intends for Keeping Score to have a sustained and continually-expanding reach to communities across the country, particularly to economically and ethnically diverse populations.

Major funding for Keeping Score is provided by the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund, with generous support from The James Irvine Foundation, Nan Tucker McEvoy, William and Gretchen Kimball, the National Endowment for the Arts, and others.

For further information about Keeping Score: MTT on Music, visit www.keepingscore.org.

ABOUT THE SAN FRANCISCO SYMPHONY

Founded in 1911, the San Francisco Symphony has a long and distinguished history marked by artistic excellence, educational initiatives, international tours, acclaimed recordings and innovative programming. Now in their tenth season together, Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas and the SFS have formed a musical partnership hailed for its revitalization of the classical music experience. The first orchestra to feature national symphonic radio broadcasts in 1926, the SFS remains a leader in the field of electronic media with endeavors such as the Grammy Award-winning Mahler recording cycle for the Orchestra's own SFS Media label, Minnesota Public Radio's Peabody Award-winning American Mavericks radio series and website, inspired by and produced in association with MTT and the SFS, and the Emmy Award-winning PBS/KQED Public Television production of the SFS's Sweeney Todd in Concert. In 2004, the SFS launched Keeping Score: MTT on Music, a groundbreaking project aimed at providing audiences of today with a connection to classical music and the powerful emotions it conveys. The initiative launched with a PBS telecast on June 16 and includes a website, educational outreach, a radio series and a continuing television series. The Orchestra's commitment to education and the community, begun in 1919 with the development of Concerts for Kids, is today recognized nationally and internationally for programs including Adventures in Music, the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra, Music for Families, and www.sfskids.com. For additional information, visit www.sfsymphony.org.

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