Each year, the Blue Hill Concert Association provides four educational engagement programs in conjunction with our concerts. Generally, these programs take place in the Blue Hill Peninsula schools, though at times the chamber groups will provide open rehearsals, workshops, or master classes in a community setting. Schools served by these engagement programs include: Blue Hill Consolidated School, George Stevens Academy, The Bay School, The Blue Hill Harbor School, Deer Isle/Stonington Elementary, Deer Isle/Stonington High School, Brooklin Elementary, Sedgwick Elementary, Brooksville Elementary, Penobscot Elementary, Surry Elementary, and the Adams School in Castine.
The Blue Hill Concert Association is deeply committed to providing youth with exposure to the best performing musicians from around the world. We schedule artists who are themselves committed to youth education as an important element of their mission. The educational opportunities we offer, in conjunction with our concerts, encourage a new generation of musicians and enhance music programming in area schools. The study of music contributes to students’ increased academic achievement and the engagement of young people with professional musicians builds self-esteem and an interest in live music. Such learning experiences encourage students to garner the courage to fulfill their own dreams.
Holly Bartlett Weinberg, founder of the BHCA’s Education Program, remembers the year four artists from the Czech Republic presented an educational engagement program at George Stevens Academy. “While waiting to begin, they spotted a basketball, and, being that GSA students were assembling in the gym, they started throwing the basketball around looking like seasoned players. This was definitely not planned. When the head of school began to speak, everyone took their seats and after the GSA Jazz band awards were passed out, these musicians were introduced and they took out their instruments and began to play. The students really responded, I think, because these musicians were just guys, who could throw around a basketball and then, play this amazing classical music. Five students came up to them at the end to thank them. It was quite an afternoon and a great example of just how effective the Concert Association’s educational [engagement] program can be!”