The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra welcomes audience members of all ages (beginning with preschoolers and early elementary school students and older) with their Family Concerts series, which features four concerts targeted for the entire family to enjoy together. This series is set apart by all of its pre-concert festivities. For example, The Phantoms of the Orchestra will have a photo booth and a Halloween art-making before the concert. One of the most beloved and interactive events before each concert series, though, is the Instrument “Petting Zoo.”


There are flutes, violins, and cellos (Oh My!) for children to touch and learn how to hold, bringing the symphony to life for them. This is a tradition of all Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Family concerts. Children can hold a flute, like the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra’s very own Christina Smith or Todd Skitch; or practice bowing a cello like Christopher Rex or Karen Freer. Children may even be able to buzz on a trumpet, like Stuart Stephenson! Don’t worry, Mom and Dad, there are volunteers who assist with each instrument, so children can begin to learn how to hold the instruments just like they can see the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra’s members hold and play theirs.

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Families have grown increasingly aware of the importance of music in the development of their children. Learning about music can improve motor skills, language skills, social skills, and computer skills, among many others in children, beginning at a very young age.  On Sunday afternoons, it’s nice to have an opportunity to participate in positive outlets that strengthen family bonds and foster communication.  Don’t want to miss your chance to participate in all this fun and excitement? You can purchase the whole series today, or you can still purchase your tickets for the opening concert, The Phantoms of the Orchestra. Check out what happened last year as Hijinks ensued at the annual Halloween concert and what to look forward to this year in our previous blog post.


Thank you to Jeff Roffman Photography for images used in this post.