Essex Symphony Orchestra Reg. Charity No. 1000732

Site last updated on 08 September 2019

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The Essex Symphony Orchestra in the Essex Community

All ESO concerts support a local Charity

Every ESO concert is presented in support of a local charity. The charity is chosen annually from a list suggested by the players.  You will find the name of the charity displayed on all ESO posters and programmes and on this website.  Our chosen charity for the 2019-20 season is Kids Inspire.  Kids Inspire helps disadvantaged young people turn their lives around and gives them back their future.

They support young people across Essex who are at an educational, social and/or economic disadvantage resulting from trauma or emerging mental health issues. For example they may have experienced sexual or domestic abuse, separation anxiety or significant loss.

The Children’s / Young Persons’ Concert

Our first Children's Concert was in 2002. It took the form of performing music such as Peter and the Wolf and the Toy Symphony to children from local primary schools.  

Other concerts followed and the format became more interactive, with a facilitator or our conductor explaining the story behind the music and what the orchestra was doing.  Some children got to volunteer to use our props and act out various roles.  There were always plenty of volunteers!  In 2012 we also had children from the Gifted & Talented registers to play in the orchestra.

These were hugely rewarding concerts to play in.  The children were so enthusiastic about joining in and expressing their excitement it was a joy to perform for them.  We know from feedback that seeing all the instruments and hearing an orchestra playing live has enormous impact.

We found that to help schools participate we needed to obtain sponsorship specifically for the concert.  In 2007, Making Music generously provided funding and we are especially fortunate that the finance group M&G has contributed funding to the orchestra’s children’s concerts from the very beginning as part of their community sponsorship programme.

In 2019 we have changed the format again and this year, again sponsored generously by M&G, we ran a whole day Young Person’s Orchestral Workshop.  See the Gallery and Article on the next page.