Artists in Residence Program: Great exposure to great music in your school and on the concert stage! 

Ensuring that your students have access to great music certainly isn’t getting any easier in today’s limited-budget climate. The Grand Rapids Symphony remains committed to ensuring that these experiences remain an active part of every child’s education.  One way we do this is through the Artists in Residence (AIR) Program.

This is a two-year partnership program between select schools and the Grand Rapids Symphony to provide not only traditional concert experiences, but also performances in the schools by small ensembles of Symphony musicians. Now, more than ever, the AIR program provides tremendous, cost-effective programming for your school.

Each year, participating schools receive:

  • Lollipop Concert Tickets - A first-exposure concert for all Kindergarten through second grade students, FREE to all AIR Schools.  
  • Instrument/String Discovery Ensemble - All fourth grade students have the unique opportunity to get an up-close and hands-on view of select instruments of the orchestra led by Symphony musicians.
  • Fifth Grade Concert Tickets - All fifth grade students attend the annual highlight of the school year!  AIR schools are able to schedule this FREE concert before it is available to the general public.  
  • Nooks & Crannies Tours - All sixth grade students are treated to a back-stage tour of DeVos Performance Hall, home of the Grand Rapids Symphony, that not only inspires them, but provides them with insight into the career options available in the arts…for FREE!  
  • In-school Performances - Each school also receives grade-level appropriate performances for all Kindergarten through sixth grade students in their school.


The total value of this program is more than $8,400! Schools new to the AIR program are able to participate in their first two-year cycle FOR FREE thanks to the generous support of Grand Rapids Symphony donors, corporate and foundation partners.  After the initial cycle, schools are able to return for only $1,000 per year—just a fraction of the cost for participating in these events individually!

How to apply:

Schools are selected through an application process.  The application process for the 2016-2018 program cycle is complete.  Materials for the 2018-2020 program cycle will be available in the winter 2020.  The application deadline is February 15, 2020. 

Presented by:

Sponsored by:

Chase, Keller Foundation, Jim & Mary Nelson, Porter Foundation, RoMan Manufacturing, The Kate & Richard Wolters Foundation