GPAC Youth Symphony Program
The GPAC theater is an acoustically perfect, 864 seat venue featuring a sprung pine stage, an elegant patron lounge, eight spacious dressing rooms, and a large lobby for entertaining and assembling; The Grove, a dynamic outdoor venue that can accommodate approximately 1200 guests in a lush outdoor setting; and the Watkins Studio Theater, an intimate black box theater. Ray Charles set the bar high when he opened GPAC in 1994, immediately defining this space as a place where excellence is the norm and where the world would come to perform. Season after season, GPAC has applauded an array of artists with extraordinary talents and showcased the broadest range of performances and art forms. GPAC presents world-renowned performing artists in a variety of genres, year-round educational activities for all ages including the GPAC Youth Symphony Orchestra, rotating visual art exhibits, and many community events welcoming over 100,000 visitors annually. The organization benefits from the infrastructure of a professional organization that possesses a clear direction, strong financial health, professional seasoned staff, and a dedicated board of directors.
The GPAC Youth Symphony program (GYSP) gives opportunities for young musicians across in the Mid-South area to perform musical masterworks under the direction of experienced conductors and teachers, to improve upon their technique, learn basic music theory, work with an ensemble and interact with professional guest artists performing at GPAC. With four distinct ensembles, GYSP’s excellent music education fosters musical growth with an emphasis on the interconnectedness of art, music, culture, history, and society. Through this program, our students are equipped with the tools to become the next generation of music advocates, educators, performers, and patrons.
MOZART STRING ENSEMBLE
The Mozart String Ensemble is for students 9-14 years of age. Mozart SE is a training group under the direction of Ms. Britta Hall with beginner to intermediate level. Student placement is based on ability, talent and skill along with their age and maturity. This group meets on Tuesdays from 4:30-5:40pm
MENDELSSOHN STRING ORCHESTRA
The Mendelssohn String Orchestra is for students 12-16 years of age under the direction of Mr. Alex Perry. Mendelssohn SO is a training group with an intermediate to advanced level. Designed to hone their orchestral skills and further develop their abilities, this program prepares students to advance to the Youth Symphony Orchestra. This group meets on Tuesdays from 5:45-7pm.
WIND ENSEMBLE (WE)
Wind Ensemble under the direction of Dr. Jonathan Schallert is made up of woodwind, brass and percussion students ages 12-18 from across the Mid-South. The focus is to provide a high- quality musical experience for its members built on fundamentals and musicianship through the great and ever-expanding concert repertoire specifically for wind ensemble.
GPAC YOUTH SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA (GYSO)
The GPAC Youth Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Mr. Jonathan Schallert is a full orchestra consisting of strings, winds, brass, percussion, harp, and keyboard. Admitted by audition, GYSO musicians are advanced students from 14-19 years of age and participate in weekly orchestra rehearsals, sectional rehearsals and weekly music appreciation class.