LSO reaches approximately 12,000 students annually in more than 90 schools throughout Nebraska through school residencies, artist visits, student tickets, and Young People’s Concerts. Student tickets for classical programs cost only $5, and last year, LSO musicians visited more than 20 schools and community programs, providing free tickets to families at Title I schools. LSO also partners with 12 service organizations to provide reduced-priced tickets for under-served members of our community.

In addition, LSO has partnered with Family Literacy, a program through Lincoln Public Schools, to make live classical music accessible for the immigrant and refugee community in Lincoln. Since 2011, LSO has provided approximately 600 complimentary tickets for each family concert through this partnership. Lincoln’s Symphony Orchestra recently received a Challenge America grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for its Family Concert series. The Challenge America category supports primarily small and mid-sized organizations for projects that extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations – those whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability. 

LSO has also received funding from the Lincoln Arts Council, Woods Charitable Fund, the Lincoln Community Foundation, and Lincoln Rotary Club #14 for its work with Family Literacy. In the spirit of this broad community support, LSO has decided to expand the reach of this project. Through new partnerships with Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska, Catholic Social Services of Southern Nebraska, Center for People in Need, and other organizations that provide support for immigrant and refugee families, LSO is offering free tickets to any immigrant or refugee family who wishes to attend its upcoming family concert.

Music Director Edward Polochick believes that this kind of inclusivity is exactly what an orchestra should embody. “We call ourselves Lincoln’s Symphony Orchestra with an apostrophe ‘s’ because our goal is to belong to our community,” said Polochick. “This is just one small way in which we can offer welcome and support to new members of our Lincoln community. Regardless of upbringing, faith, language, or country of origin, we believe that music can speak to the deepest parts of the human experience, and I am honored to share this incredible art form with all members of our community.”

LSO’s all-ages, family-friendly concert takes place this upcoming Sunday, February 5, at 2:00 p.m., and is called Fairy Tale Fantasy. The Madcap Puppets, with puppets reaching over 12 feet tall, will take the audience through a music-filled journey, featuring traditional fairy tales from across the world, including Germany, Norway, England and China, with such favorites as The Gingerbread Man and the story of Rapunzel. Meanwhile, the orchestra will perform well-known works such as Mozart’s Overture from The Marriage of Figaro, Grieg’s Anitra’s Dance and Leroy Anderson’s The Typewriter.

The concert will be preceded by children’s activities starting at 1:00 p.m. in the lobby areas of the Rogers Fine Arts Center on the Nebraska Wesleyan University Campus, 50th Street and Huntington Avenue. Dietze Music and Lincoln Suzuki Studios will sponsor an instrument petting zoo, and there will be games with teachers from Harris Academy of the Arts. Children can also enjoy a photobooth provided by JamesAnn Photography, face-painting, and arts and crafts provided by Lincoln’s Macaroni Kid.

If you are a sponsor for a refugee family or if you wish to receive more information, please contact Lindsay@lincolnsymphony.com or call (402) 476-2211. For more information about LSO programs and services, visit www.lincolnsymphony.org.

Lincoln’s Symphony Orchestra’s 2016-2017 season sponsor is The Landing at Williamsburg Village, an Immanuel Community. The concert sponsor for “Fairy Tale Fantasy” is Nelnet. The Nebraska Arts Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment also provided generous support toward Lincoln’s Symphony Orchestra’s 2016-2017 season.