Symphony Orchestra of Northwest Arkansas

Symphony Orchestra of Northwest Arkansas

Northwest Region
Fayetteville, Arkansas
[email protected]

SoNA's ImagiMusic workshops strive to enrich and improve student development by bringing orchestral-based education programs into Northwest Arkansas' local school environment, in line with Arkansas' state curriculum and Common Core State Standards. ImagiMusic workshops are available for students in 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th grades. An ensemble of SoNA musicians, consisting of a brass, string, or woodwind quintet, along with Education Director Kristen Salinas, present exciting and interactive workshops to students in the 3rd through 5th grades. Starting with orchestral basics, students learn about the families of the orchestra and receive hands-on experience being the "maestro." SoNA is able to provide a menu of three interactive grade-level appropriate lessons: “Use Your ZOOmagination”-- 3rd grade, “SoNA Sets the Scene”-- 4th grade, and “SoNA in Wonderland” -- 5th grade. All lessons use symphonic music, visual art, drama, and literature as the catalyst for teaching grade level core curriculum. The “Use your ZOOmagnation” lessons incorporate poems from the book Zoo Doings by Jack Prelutsky for students to further explore characters/characterization, discuss word choice and other literary elements, and compose music alongside SoNA musicians. SoNA also provides sixth-graders an introduction to a SoNA string quintet, while reinforcing skills in improvising, listening, and composing. Using the Strings Family of the orchestra as a foundation, our goal is to actively engage students, with topics that include timbre, melody/accompaniment, and word choice in literature by utilizing Lemony Snicket's book The Austere Academy. In the workshop, students create mini compositions inspired by word choice in the selected Lemony Snicket text. Students will also get to try out a life-size violin, viola, cello, and double bass created out of paper and foam, inspired by the El Sistema Curriculum's "Paper Orchestra." SoNA also provides guest artist performances of Masterworks concert soloists to local schools during the regular concert season.


SoNA, The Symphony of Northwest Arkansas (formerly North Arkansas Symphony) is the region’s professional symphony orchestra under the musical direction of Maestro Paul Haas, a graduate of Yale University and The Juilliard School. Currently in its seventh season, SoNA is committed to the performance of orchestral music of all periods at the highest artistic level. SoNA is comprised of approximately sixty-five of the top musicians from nine states; our Concertmaster travels from England. SoNA is a resident company of Walton Arts Center in Fayetteville.

AIE Program

Preferred Age Level: all ages
Geographic Availability: statewide
Time Availability: open
Special Needs: chairs and musical stands