Engagement Resources for Children, Families and Educators

Kids watching concert on tablet

The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra’s free Concert Library offers both live and on-demand video of concerts that can be viewed anytime, anywhere, completely free of charge. The library has 18 full-length concert videos for free on-demand viewing, including two concerts designed for children and their families, and dozens of audio concerts for streaming through the SPCO’s partnership with Classical Minnesota Public Radio.

Below is a new list of resources for children, families, and educators in response to COVID-19 and will continue to update this content. Check back to see updates and additional resources, activities, and supplementary materials for all ages to engage with the Concert Library.

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Helpful tips, including how to watch concerts on your TV

I think that the activities are great! There are a lot of them and they are really diverse. I like all of the different levels and different learning styles it hits. There is coloring, listening, imagining and moving all incorporated into it. Realistically, if I took this into my classroom, I could use this to make a four lesson unit to really extract a lot of learning out of one performance. I am really impressed with the concert too. Bravo!
Katie, Elementary Music Specialist from Naples, Florida

Exploring the Concert Library

In addition to these family concerts, take advantage of the other 18 full-length video concerts, as well as the dozens of audio concerts all available — at no cost and no advertisement interruptions. Enjoy access to a wide variety of over 66 composers, 16 genres, 50 soloists and 9 SPCO premieres. Our high-quality sound and close-up camera work give you the feeling of being on stage with the musicians. We hope this will allow you to experience the joy that comes with digital concertgoing!

Introduce yourself to our music with more activities!

To make your digital concert experience even more interactive, check out our full range of activities at the bottom of this page.

Themed Playlists

As part of our efforts to advance diversity, equity and inclusion in our organization and in our field, we are pleased to use our platform to celebrate and honor the contributions of artists who have historically been underrepresented at the SPCO and in the broader classical music field. We invite you to explore the playlists and activities below.

NEW! Native American Heritage Month Playlist and Activities

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month Playlist and Activities

Women’s History Month Playlist and Activities

Black History Month Playlist and Activities

Hispanic Heritage Month Playlist and Activities

Connecting with Composers

A Special Family Program

How does an idea turn into the musical performances we hear on a stage? Brand new music from living composers Ambrose Akinmusire, Tyson Davis, Adolphus Hailstork and Chen Yi serves as the framework for this engaging program. Children will be invited to participate in activities, answer questions aloud and view personal conversations with composers and musicians of The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. This program is geared toward 6-12 year olds but can be enjoyed by all.

Supplement your viewing experience with engaging activities.

Available on demand in the Concert Library.

Race for the Reef

A Digital Concert Video

Young viewers can watch as Leopold the Leopard and his friend Tree join The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra for a musical adventure. Created by Los Angeles-based master puppeteer Victor Yerrid, this 40 minute underwater journey introduces the instruments of the orchestra, then races and weaves through Schubert’s Third Symphony. It’s created for ages 6–12, but can be enjoyed by people of all ages.

Make your digital concert experience even more interactive with this free activities packet!

Available on demand in our Concert Library.

A Nighttime Story

A Digital Concert Video

Playwright Harrison David Rivers’ A Nighttime Story weaves through dynamic music by composer Jessie Montgomery to create a memorable concert experience. Actor H. Adam Harris’ young character hears the history of his family from his Grandmother one special night under the old family tree. It’s created for ages 6–12, but can be enjoyed by people of all ages.

Make your digital concert experience even more interactive with this free activities packet!

Available on demand in our Concert Library.

É Gol!

Come take part in the music-making process in this engaging and interactive concert featuring composer Clarice Assad. Audiences will have the chance to participate in her piece É Gol (And Goal!), written about Brazilian soccer star Marta Vieira da Silva. Families will be able to add their own voices and bodies to the music, making connections with the minds of musicians and athletes as they prepare for a big performance or game. É GOL!

The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra collaborates with MN Aurora to present this Family Concert. Minnesota Aurora is a women-led, community-owned soccer team in the Twin Cities.

Explore the Music of Clarice Assad

More about Marta Vieira da Silva

Athletic Musicians Activity

É Gol! Family Concert Preparation

Extra Engagement Activities

Below you will find ready-to-go printable activities that extend and enrich learning and exploration of the SPCO’s always-free online Concert Library.  Activities range from lesson ideas for all ages to short specific opportunities to extend your experience beyond viewing the concerts within the Concert Library.  Teachers have already utilized the Concert Library to organize a “virtual field trip” for their students, some have used these as one-to-one assignments, and some families have used them as extension activities to go beyond the concert experience. However you might utilize them, it is our hope that they are a useful and easy-to-use addition to your listening toolkit.

Connecting with Composers Engagement Activities

Variaciones Concertantes Footwork Exercise and Listening Map

Listening Exercise: Compare & Contrast

Draw What You Hear: Shape of a Melody

Creating Soundscapes: Become River

Race for the Reef  Coloring Page and Listening Activity

A Nighttime Story  Coloring Page and Listening Activity

Concert Library Scavenger Hunt

Compiled Activities Packet