Education & Community

Meet Allen Jiang, Principal Bassoon of the GSO, and hear part of his story about how access to student tickets to symphony concerts played a role in his journey to becoming a professional musician.

"My passion for the bassoon began in middle school when my band teacher encouraged me to choose it as my primary instrument. I practiced hard and auditioned and soon I was accepted as a bassoonist in the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras. I spent many evenings at Orchestra Hall thanks to the student ticket program offered by the world-renowned Chicago Symphony Orchestra. These concerts were some of my most inspiring and transformative experiences.

By my sophomore year of high school, I had decided to pursue music professionally. That’s why I’m so grateful for the support of donors to the Greenville Symphony, whose generosity makes it possible for us to offer $5 student tickets. Each concert weekend, around 100 students take advantage of this incredible opportunity. As I look out at the audience, I’m reminded of the experience I had as a student and the incredible gift our donors provide for the youth of our community. Each year the number of students at GSO concerts continues to grow. Thank you!"

Education Mission


To inspire, enrich and educate diverse listeners of all ages with concerts, mentorships, and other high-quality music programs — all free!

Annually, the GSO offers more than 100 free events that serve 25,000 people in the South Carolina Upstate. Our programs are designed for every age and listener. We are passionate about supporting and promoting our local music teachers, the Palmetto Basics, and our community arts partners like the SC Children’s Theatre, Greenville County Youth Orchestra, and the Carolina Youth Symphony.

Student and Teacher Tickets!
Discounted $5 Student Tickets and $10 Teacher Tickets are available for purchase on the day of the Peace Concert Hall and Gunter Theatre.

Education and Community Engagement Opportunities

For our Youngest Audiences

Lollipops FREE
Best for ages 3-8
Experience the magic of live classical music and storytelling with Traysie Amick, South Carolina Children’s Theatre Principal Teaching Artist. A Greenville favorite for over 40 years!

Creepy Carrots By Aaron Reynolds

Saturday, October 14, 2023
10 AM-10:30 AM: Hughes Main Library
11:30 AM-12 PM: Greer Library

Olivia Forms a Band by Ian Falconer

Saturday, November 4, 2023
10 AM-10:30 AM: Hughes Main Library
11:30 AM-12 PM: Travelers Rest Library

Dance by Matthew Van Fleet

Saturday, January 27, 2024
10 AM-10:30 AM: Hughes Main Library
11:30 AM-12 PM: Five Forks Library

The Really Awful Musicians by John Manders

Saturday, February 24, 2024
10 AM-10:30 AM: Hughes Main Library
11:30 AM-12 PM: Greer Library

The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson

Saturday, March 30, 2024
10 AM-10:30 AM: Hughes Main Library
11:30 AM-12 PM: Travelers Rest Library

Steam Train, Dream Train by Sherri Duskey Rinker

Saturday, May 11, 2024
10 AM-10:30 AM: Hughes Main Library
11:30 AM-12 PM: Five Forks Library

Once Upon An Orchestra FREE
South Carolina Children’s Theatre
Best for ages 3-8
Children get a front row, interactive seat for Traysie Amick, South Carolina Children’s Theatre Principal Teaching Artist, and some of the Greenville Symphony’s most talented musicians. Kids learn to act out important concepts and actions from the story, backed by a beautiful live soundtrack.

Night Animals by Giana Marino featuring strings

Tuesday, November 7, 2023, at 11 AM

Music for Mister Moon by Philip C. Stead, featuring cello

Tuesday, February 6, 2024, at 11 AM

Interrupting Chicken by David Ezra Stein, featuring clarinet and percussion

Tuesday, April 30, 2024, at 11 AM

Elementary School
EdReach In-School Concerts

Small ensembles from the Greenville Symphony visit all 52 elementary schools in Greenville County! Students learn about the different families of instruments, how they sound individually and together, how music is put together, and what a career in music is like. The Greenville Symphony musicians encourage all students to try band, strings, or chorus when they reach middle school.

The Annual Children’s Concert
Peace Concert Hall

Fourth and fifth graders get to hear and experience how exciting a live orchestra can be when they hear the expansive sound of the Greenville Symphony Orchestra for free! Greenville County Public Schools receive priority access, but this concert is open to homeschoolers, co-ops, and charter schools as well.

“Migrations in Rhythm: A Concerto for Beatbox and Rhyme” starring Christylez Bacon, Beatbox
October 6, 2023, 10 AM and 12 PM

Middle School
Music Mentor Program

Greenville Symphony Musicians visit Greenville County Middle School band and string programs to perform for and coach young musicians at no cost to the students, teachers, or schools. Interested teachers should email Anneka Zuehlke-King (

High School to Adult
Shoulder to Shoulder and Side by Side The Greenville Symphony partners with local youth orchestra programs to coach young musicians, then perform with them onstage.

Carolina Youth Symphony Fall Concert Side by Side
October 29, 2023, 5 PM
Peace Concert Hall
Learn More

Greenville County Youth Orchestra Concert Shoulder to Shoulder
February 3, 2024, 7:30 PM
Peace Concert Hall
Learn More

Student Ambassador Program
The Greenville Symphony is excited to continue its newest community program, Greenville Symphony Student Ambassadors (GSSA). Student Ambassadors will have volunteer opportunities before Symphony concerts, education events, and performance opportunities, as well as the opportunity to interact with orchestra musicians. Ambassadors will receive a free ticket to each concert for which they volunteer. 

Guest Artists Masterclass
Watch and learn from our amazing guest soloists as they work with talented and committed high school and college music students one-on-one in front of an audience of their peers and interested adults. Masterclasses are held at Smith Recital Hall, SC Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities.


Andrius Zlabys, piano
September 8, 2023
10 AM – 11:30 AM

Simone Porter, violin
November 10, 2023
10 AM – 11:30 AM

Joshua Roman, cello
January 19, 2024
10AM – 11:30 AM

Tessa Lark, violin
February 16, 2024
10AM – 11:30 AM

Community Partners

The GSO collaborates with various organizations to educate, inspire, and serve diverse communities through music.

Founded in 2003, Artisphere’s mission is to create a nationally recognized Fine Arts Festival that enhances the quality of life and economic vitality in South Carolina. In 2009 special performance awards were inaugurated and underwritten by the Fred Collins Foundation, distributing $130,000 to arts groups participating in the Local Performing Arts Showcase.

Carolina Youth Symphony prides itself on creating a community for young musicians, their families and the people that support their passion for music. The Carolina Youth Symphony strives to encourage pride and self-esteem in young people from all cultural backgrounds through their individual musical achievement; create an atmosphere of discipline and appreciation of fine music; promote and enhance the cultural life of Upstate South Carolina, Georgia and North Carolina through orchestral performance, community outreach programs, open rehearsals and recitals, and open music competitions.

Join the Chamber Music Society of the Carolinas this summer as they foster shared experiences of joy, creativity, and transcendence through world-class chamber music in our Summer Concert Series.

Enjoy your choice of either artisan coffee or craft beer (or both!) from the same bar. Grateful Brew is a casual place in Greenville, SC where all are welcome. Through neighborhood holiday cookouts, beer tastings, fundraising efforts, or other various events, Grateful Brew has become a hub for community members to come together. Whether it’s a hot latte or a cold lager, we put equal attention into both, giving you a unique experience unlike anywhere else in Greenville, SC.

The Greenville County Library System’s Mission is to champion literacy, inspire learning, and foster community connection. In 2022 over one million visits to a Greenville County Library were recorded. Many of those visits included a Greenville Symphony Orchestra Lollipops performance in partnership with the South Carolina Children’s Theatre. Spread throughout the year, and the county, the GSO performs music with children’s books open to all ages.

Greenville County Museum of Art is considered the premier American art museum in the South and is home to the world’s largest public collection of watercolors by iconic American Artist Andrew Wyeth. GCMA also has an impressive collection of paintings and prints by contemporary artist Jasper Johns, the largest institutional collection of pottery by enslaved artisan David Drake, and the largest collection outside the Smithsonian of works by South Carolina-born artist William H. Johnson. Ranging from Federal portraits to contemporary abstractions, the GCMA’s acclaimed Southern Collection invites viewers to survey American art history through works with ties to the South.

Greenville County Schools: The Greenville Symphony Orchestra visits all 51 Elementary Schools in Greenville County, introducing students to their instruments, music, and the life of a musician.

Greenville County Youth Orchestras has been educating young musicians for over forty years. Their mission is to impact the lives of young people by providing a quality orchestral program that develops and educates young musicians in the art of performance and enhances their personal musicianship. They strive to make their programs available to all qualifying students, regardless of their socio-economic status.

The Judson Community Partnership exists to provide opportunities for academic growth, exposure to the arts, and therapeutic healing to youth and families in the Judson neighborhood of Greenville, SC, through afterschool programming and community-based relationships.

M.Judson Booksellers: Downtown Greenville’s independent local bookstore and thriving literary hub.

The Sigal Music Museum celebrates music through the ages by entertaining and informing audiences through interactive exhibits, educational programs and intimate concert performances.

South Carolina Children’s Theatre (SCCT) has impacted the lives of children and families in our community through theatre since 1987. SCCT produces high-quality, live theatrical performances for multigenerational audiences in the heart of downtown Greenville, SC. In addition to production, SCCT provides classes and camps in the theatre education for ages 3-18 and outreach to underestimated communities.

The SC Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities is a public magnet school serving the artistically talented high school students of South Carolina through programs of pre-professional instruction in an environment of artistic and academic excellence. The school is a resource for all teachers and students in South Carolina.

The Children’s Museum of the Upstate in downtown Greenville offers 80,000 square feet dedicated to play-based learning. Exhibits and weekly programs encourage hands-on play, unique discoveries and intentional learning opportunities.

Upstate Warrior Connection is a community-based nonprofit organization serving warriors and their families in the upstate of South Carolina. Their mission is to connect warriors and their family members to resources and opportunities, lead them through the process of self-empowerment, and inspire the community to embrace local warriors and their family members as valued neighbors and friends.