Sinfonietta’s Outreach & Education Programs


Orchestra at Work

One of the greatest gifts a professional orchestra can give a community is a strong education program, particularly as music education is increasingly being cut from school budgets. Our educational program was conceived to answer the question: “How does an orchestra work?” The Orchestra at Work program offers students the opportunity to closely observe and experience the artistic and practical considerations that guide the rehearsal process.

Students attending a rehearsal will observe the preparation of a professional orchestra, hear the conversation between the conductor and musicians, gain an understanding of how musical choices are made and implemented, as well as a familiarity with the composers and pieces being rehearsed. Students receive discounted or complimentary tickets to the culminating concert so that the students can see the concert preparation process from start to finish. For many students, Orchestra at Work may provide their first or most meaningful experience of classical music, and we strive to inspire them to stay involved with music, make it a part of their lives, and consider themselves patrons of the arts.

The director of Pierce College Puyallup’s music programs, Kenneth Owen, D.M.A., had this to say about the program: “Having the Northwest Sinfonietta at Pierce College gave students an incredible opportunity to see the fine arts happen in person, and in our community. Students in Humanities classes were able to see what they are learning about first hand at the highest level. Music students had an invaluable chance to observe a rehearsal on that level and to speak with professional musicians about what they do, and what is expected of them.”

If you are interested in scheduling a field trip for your music, arts, or humanities students to attend one of our rehearsals in Tacoma or Puyallup, please contact us at education@nwsinfonietta or call (253) 383-5344. Grades 4-12 and collegiate classes are welcome from both public and private institutions.


 Perform with the Sinfonietta

Competition open to high school students


Youth Concerto Competition

Northwest Sinfonietta is delighted to offer a Youth Concerto Competition to Puget Sound area high school students.
The winner will perform with Northwest Sinfonietta on its March 28 & 29 subscription concerts.



The Youth Concerto Competition is open to any Puget Sound area high school violin, viola, cello, string bass, harp, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, french horn or trumpet student who has received the recommendation of his/her high school band or orchestra director. Participants must be members in good standing of their high school music program. Home-schooled students are encouraged to participate, with the recommendation of their music instructor.


Benefits and Responsibilities of the Winner

  • Perform as a soloist with the Northwest Sinfonietta on Saturday, March 28, 2020 at 7:30pm in Tacoma and on Sunday, March 29, 2020 at 2pm in Puyallup.

  • Receive coaching in style, interpretation, and stage presence from Yaniv Attar, Northwest Sinfonietta Artistic Partner.

  • Receive a scholarship prize.

  • Use this opportunity to gain experience to compete for regional and state solo competitions and college scholarships.


Requirements (Read Carefully)

  • The student must perform a live solo audition. The piece performed must be of high musical and technical substance and quality. The piece must be approved in advance of the competition by the Northwest Sinfonietta.

  •  The piece or movement from a piece must be performed in its entirety: cuts will not be permitted.

  •  The performance time must not exceed 16 minutes.

  • The soloist must be accompanied by piano at the audition. The soloist is responsible for providing their own accompanist.

  • The solo performed at the audition must be the one intended for the performance with the Northwest Sinfonietta.

  • The piece selected must have an orchestral accompaniment no larger than 2fl, 2ob, 1cl, 1bsn, 2hrn, harp, 2perc, strings. Music available as "rental only" will not be acceptable. If the selected piece is not approved by NWS for the competition, the student must select a different piece.

  • The student must be available for daytime rehearsals (times to be specified) during the week of March 24-27, and for concerts on Saturday, March 28, 2020 at 7:30pm (Tacoma), and Sunday, March 29 at 2pm (Puyallup)

  • Not all applicants will be selected to audition.



  • Complete the on-line application by using the button below.

  • Include in your application a URL to a video 4-5 minutes long showing your best work. This video does NOT have to be your audition piece. The video may be either accompanied or unaccompanied. This video submission will serve as our tool to determine who will be invited to the live auditions, so make it impressive.

  • Pay the $25 non-refundable application fee.



 Musical Outreach

supporting under-served communities



Through the HeartStrings program, Northwest Sinfonietta partners with a broad spectrum of social service agencies to deliver free concert tickets to community members who struggle with economic, physical, or mental challenges in Pierce and King Counties.

We are always looking to expand this program. If your organization would like to participate, please contact us at office@nwsinfonietta or call (253) 383-5344.


Testimonials from participants

“Unless you’ve experiences a sense of the isolation that is an inevitable part of deafness, you can’t imagine how important it is to know that the Association of Late Deafened Adults is welcomed at Northwest Sinfonietta.”
–Christine Seymour, former National President, ALDA

“I work with women in recovery. These women seldom have the opportunity to enjoy an event such as this; they are the indigent and the working poor. They give everything to their families and ask little in return. Thank you for this generous opportunity and the healing that this event provides the community.”
–Arlene White, CACDP, Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department



HeartStrings program participants

YWCA Pierce County
South Sound Outreach
Pierce County Tacoma Health Dept
Assoc. of Late-Deafened Adults
St. Leo's Food Connection
Alliance of People w/disAbilities
Whole Child Access Pass
Pierce County AIDS Foundation
Lifelong AIDS Alliance
Oakridge State Community Facility
Piece County Housing Authority
REACH Tacoma
Hearing Speech & Deafness Center