In Sunday’s (8/10) Shreveport Times (Louisiana), Courtney Spradlin writes about the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra’s Discovering Orchestral Music program at seven elementary partner schools. “Ron Bermingham, SSO director of artistic operations, said funding cutbacks in the arts necessitate the symphony’s discovery series. ‘One of the points of the outreach we do in schools is to help keep music thriving in schools,’ … Bermingham said. Another reason for the outreach—there are some incredibly artistic students who have a special kind of aptitude that needs to be nurtured. Bermingham said there is a lot of hype for STEM [Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics] subjects, but the school curriculum isn’t always aimed at developing the artistic aptitude in music. ‘The orchestra is able to talk to students about being a musician and earning a living as a musician,’ he said…. ‘It helps to nurture the students’ artistic spirits and brings them along for the step that’s next for them.’ The partnership is afforded through a Community Foundation of North Louisiana grant. Bermingham said the success of the program will be measured by pre- and post-program testing. Test results in music and the arts will be compared before and after participating schools complete the four elements of the series.”

Posted August 13, 2014

Pictured: Members of the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra String Quintet at Caddo Heights Math/Science Elementary School