Classroom Resources for Teachers

Symphony Day Prep & Guidelines

Marin Symphony Day is going to be a very exciting experience for everybody—for the listeners in the audience as well as for the musicians onstage. In order for everyone to enjoy the concert as fully as possible, please observe the following important guidelines.

• One week in advance of the concert, you will receive directions to the Veterans’ Memorial Auditorium and details on the entrance through which your school will be entering. Please prepare to present that confirmation at the Auditorium on the day of the performance.
• As this may be your students’ first orchestra concert experience, please review concert etiquette and the importance of being good listeners. Below, you will find some some resources that may be helpful in introducing these topics:

To Learn About Enjoying a Concert:
“The Listeners’ Job Description” (Naxos)
Concert Manners (Naxos)
Concert Rituals (Naxos)
To Learn About the Instruments That Make Up an Orchestra:
Interactive site showing instruments of the orchestra (SF Symphony)
In-depth introductions to each instrument (Khan Academy)

• To familiarize your students with the music they will hear, here are some links to excerpts of most of the pieces on the Symphony Day program:

Leonard Bernstein: West Side Story Overture (5 minutes)
Listen: performance by the BBC Concert Orchestra
Antonio Vivaldi: Concerto for 4 Violins (4 minutes)
Watch: performance by the Indiana University Virtuosi
Felix Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto, 3rd mvmt (6 minutes)
Watch: solo performed by Julia Fischer
Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade, 1st mvmt (6 minutes)
Watch: performance by the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela

• Please contact ahead of of Symphony Day regarding those in your party with special needs.


• Before leaving school, please allow time for students to visit the restroom. There is no intermission in the 45 minute concert and mid-concert trips to the restroom mean missing out on great music!

• If you are coming by bus, be sure to get your driver’s cell phone number and bus number.

• Doors will open at the Veterans’ Memorial Auditorium at 10:20am. Please plan to arrive in time to be seated by 10:55am. Seating is first-come, first-served.

• If your group is traveling separately, meet outside your assigned entrance until everyone is assembled. Only complete groups will be seated.

• You will be greeted by a Symphony Volunteer at the door. Let them know your school name and the total number of people in your group sitting together.

• Food, Drinks, Chewing Gum, and Backpacks are not permitted in the hall.


• Please turn off your cell phones. The use of cameras and video recorders is prohibited.

• Teachers and chaperones should sit amongst the students. To ensure everyone’s enjoyment of the concert, please take immediate action in the event of inappropriate behavior.


• When the concert is over, please keep your group together and exit through your assigned door.


We would love to hear from you and your students about the experience. Please send any letters or artwork to: Education Department, Marin Symphony, 4340 Redwood Highway, Suite 409C, San Rafael, CA, 94903.