Studies show that music education in school improves a students’ academic performance. A 2014 study by the University of Kansas concluded that “Students engaged in music programs¬† outperformed their peers on every indicator: grade-point average, graduation rate, ACT scores, attendance and discipline referrals.” The Venice Symphony is a leader in bringing classical music to the youth in our community, and has been for more than 25 years.

The Venice Symphony is passionate about inspiring a lifelong appreciation of music. Our dedicated musicians and volunteers provide vital music education throughout our community.

Symphony in the Schools Program

For more than 20 years, The Venice Symphony has proudly provided an annual music experience to South Sarasota County third graders. Our Symphony in the Schools (SITS) program brings musicians of The Venice Symphony and an interactive curriculum to third grade students in participating schools in Sarasota County. This year, we are working with 20 schools, homeschool groups, and for the first time: students in special needs classrooms. The Venice Symphony is one of only three groups in Florida to participate in the Carnegie Hall – Weill Music Institute prestigious “Link Up” education program.

Throughout the school year, the musicians from each section of The Venice Symphony (strings, brass, woodwinds, and percussion) visit the schools to give music demonstrations and interact with students, discuss how music makes you feel, concert etiquette, and the physics of sounds etcetera. For the SITS grand finale, the program culminates with a year-end concert. Every third grader who participated will have the opportunity to dress up and board a bus to the Venice Performing Arts Center, where they will attend a concert performed by The Venice Symphony. More than 1700 third grade students in South Sarasota County Schools participate in this program each year. It is funded by grants, gifts, and fundraisers of The Venice Symphony and is provided at no cost to the schools or students.

The Venice Symphony Summer Music Camp

In 1990 the Venice Symphony offered its first summer music camp to 25 students. In recent years, nearly 200 students, grades 1 – 12, had the experience of playing and an instrument, while learning about the orchestra, music history, musical theater, and much more. Campers may choose from many instruments, including, but not limited to: keyboards, strings, brass, jazz or vocal instruction; as they enjoy learning musical concepts. The two-week program takes place at Island Village Montessori School in Venice. On the last day of the program, campers provide a public concert for their families and friends. Music camp focuses on beginning and intermediate levels, and meets or exceeds the state mandated benchmarks. The cost per student is only $150 and need-based scholarships are made possible through grants and gifts.

For more information about The Venice Symphony Summer Music Camp, contact: Gayle Heskett, Camp Director at or (941) 412-5222.


Explorations Contact: Gayle Heskett

Phone: 941-488-1010



Summer or Family Programs? Yes - See Description for More

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