The Education Programme

The Philharmonia’s distinctive education programme sits at the core of the organisation’s activity,
reflecting the Orchestra’s artistic integrity, identity and quality.

The department’s work falls into four distinct strands – Schools and Young People, Communities and Family, Insights and the Emerging Artists programme, reaching tens of thousands of people every year. It is an essential component of each of the Orchestra’s residencies, complementing the core London programme and our Residencies through a diverse range of projects, working with young people and adults from all spectrums of society in a multitude of settings including schools, higher education, community organisations and music education hubs.

The Philharmonia’s Education Department aims to inspire and engage as broad an audience as possible via an imaginative portfolio of participatory and educational projects, adding another dimension to the Orchestra’s work, and playing a central role in the broader life of the Orchestra.

If you would be interested in working with the Philharmonia or keen to find out more about projects in your area, please contact:

(+44) 020 7921 3904

What's happening in your region...

The Philharmonia Orchestra has worked on education projects across the UK. On the map, large dots indicate where the Orchestra is resident, and small dots indicate recent project locations.

Choose an area from the below list to tailor this page and see an overview, upcoming events and news posts for that region.

Education Projects Around The UK

Upcoming Public Events

Saturday 4 Aug 2018

Three Choirs Festival: Young Artists Recital

St John's Methodist Church, Hereford, 5:15pm


Sunday 30 Sep 2018

Insights Talk

Royal Festival Hall, London, 6:00pm


Tuesday 13 Nov 2018

Insights Talk

The Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury, 6:15pm


Wednesday 5 Dec 2018

Insights Talk

De Montfort Hall, Leicester, 6:15pm


Wednesday 23 Jan 2019

Insights Talk

The Anvil, Basingstoke, 6:30pm



Philharmonia MMSF Young Artist Recital

Tuesday 11 Jul 2017

As part of their place on the Philharmonia MMSF String Fellowship Programme, the five current Fellows gave a pre-concert showcase recital at the Royal Festival Hall on 1 June. The recital consisted of a variety of chamber music repertoire, and the Fellows receiving coaching in advance from 1st violinist Nathaniel Anderson-Frank focussing on the concert repertoire. The Fellows are approaching the end of the first year of the two-year programme, and have so far undertaken several patches of paid work with the Orchestra, receiving support from their Mentors within the section.

Following the successful launch of the String Fellowship programme this season, a specially devised Instrumental Fellowship scheme for woodwind, brass, harps and pianos will begin in the 2017/18 season for selected young instrumentalists.

Leicester-Shire Schools Music Service 70th Anniversary Commission Project

Saturday 8 Jul 2017

The first workshop for the Leicester-Shire Schools Music Service 70th anniversary commission, entitled Legend of the Sky took place on Saturday 8 July. Led by composer/conductor Fraser Trainer and supported by Philharmonia players Gideon Robinson and Shelly Organ, the workshop consisted of improvisation and music devising sessions inspired by a local mythological creature, The Griffin of Griffydam. The workshop culminated in an informal sharing of these devised musical sketches.

Leicester-Shire Schools Music Service celebrates its 70th anniversary in 2017/18. As part of the celebrations, the Philharmonia Orchestra and LSMS have commissioned a brand new piece of music for mixed orchestral ensemble, a creative ensemble who have devising responsibilities, four primary school choirs, a music service SAB choir, a steel pan group and a group of Classical Indian musicians. This brand new piece, Legend of the Sky,  will be composed and conducted by Fraser Trainer. Fraser, along with Philharmonia musicians, will work with all the participating groups over the next 6 months, resulting in a premiere performance at De Montfort Hall, Leicester on Saturday 3 February 2018.

Symphonize in Leicester and Kingston

Wednesday 3 May 2017

In partnership with Soft Touch Arts, Philharmonia Orchestra brought together young people from Fullhurst Community College, The Lancaster School and the Highfields Centre, Leicester with Soft Touch urban artists and Philharmonia musicians to compose, produce and perform their own tracks on an intensive week-long project. Taking inspiration from Beethoven’s infamous Symphony no. 5, participants explored fusing classical and urban musical styles and the project culminated at New Walk Museum, Leicester on Wednesday 11 January 2017. Click here to watch a documentary podcast about the project.

The project also took place in the London Borough of Kingston, working in partnership with Kingston Music Service and participants from Malden Oaks, a small school for students who have found it difficult to access mainstream education, and Anstee Bridge, a project that helps young people aged 15-16 build confidence to re-engage with education through creativity. Working with reggae and dub producer I-Mitri CounterAction, spoken word artist Leah Vee and Philharmonia musicians, participants took inspiration from Holst’s The Planets, and performed their new works at All Saints Church, Kingston on Wednesday 29 March 2017.

Orchestra Unwrapped 2016/17

Thursday 27 Apr 2017

The final schools concert of our renowned series Orchestra Unwrapped took place on Friday 24 March 2017 at De Montfort Hall, Leicester. This season, we’ve performed five Orchestra Unwrapped concerts themed ‘City, Town and Place’ at four venues across the UK (De Montfort Hall, Leicester – twice – The Anvil, Basingstoke, Bedford Corn Exchange, and The Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury), reaching over 4,870 children and 740 adults. More than 100 teachers received training from music education specialist and concert presenter Paul Rissmann in advance of the concerts, and 21 talented young string players from three music hubs (Leicester-Shire Schools Music Service, Kent Music and the North Bedfordshire Youth Chamber Orchestra) performed side-by-side within the Philharmonia string section, receiving coaching in advance. This year the Philharmonia commissioned Paul Rissmann to write a new audience participation piece entitled Past-Present-Future? with a libretto from Hazel Gould, which took inspiration from creative contributions by pupils from eight schools in Leicester and Bedford.