Founded in 1993 and run in partnership with Berkeley Unified School District, Berkeley Symphony’s Music in the Schools program provides comprehensive, age-appropriate music curriculum to over 4,600 Berkeley public elementary and middle school students each year. Recognized by the League of American Orchestras as one of the country’s top music education programs, Music in the Schools (MITS) helps students fulfill the California Performing Arts Content Standards and provides new ways of approaching many other subjects in the core curriculum. Music in the Schools is under the leadership of Education Director Ming Luke.

Facts about our in-school residency:

  • Over 200 in-class sessions led by Berkeley Symphony musicians at all eleven BUSD elementary schools each year. Classroom sessions include hands-on music education and curriculum guides for teachers addressing state standards for music education.
  • 130 ensemble coaching sessions, twenty-two master classes, and six ensemble adjudication sessions led by Berkeley Symphony musicians at all three BUSD middle schools each year.
  • Eleven “Meet the Symphony” concerts in BUSD elementary schools each Fall.
  • Six “I’m a Performer!” concerts at BUSD elementary schools each Spring, providing young musicians opportunities to rehearse and perform side-by-side with Berkeley Symphony.
  • Four annual Family Concerts, providing opportunities for students, their families, and community members to experience a Berkeley Symphony concert together
  • All Music in the Schools programming is provided 100% free of charge for children and their families.


Music in the Schools is made possible only with your support. Impact the lives of 4,600 elementary and middle school children each year.

Become a Parent Liaison!

Parents are a huge help when it comes to our Music in the Schools program. If you are interested in becoming a parent Liaison or you simply want to learn more, contact our Associate Executive Director, Ian Harwood by clicking the button below!


2017-18 MITS SPONSORS (Gifts of $1000 and above annually)

The Berkeley Symphony’s MITS program is generously supported by the following individuals, foundations, and corporations (gifts received Feb 1, 2017 – Jan 31, 2018):

Susan & Jim Acquistapace • Gertrude Allen • Michelle & John Battelle • Laura & Paul Bennett • Berkeley Public Schools Fund • Chevron • Susan & Ronald Choy • Christine & Richard Colton • Kathleen Crandall & Lori Gitter • The Familian Levinson Foundation • Sandra & Kit Floyd • Dean Francis • The Friendship Fund • Graybird Foundation • Nina Grove & Kenneth Johnson • The Grubb Co. • Ellen Hahn • Bereket Haregot • Kathleen G. Henschel & John W. Dewes • Lisa& Buzz Hines • Mr. & Mrs. Herrick Jackson • Edith Jackson & Thomas Richardson • Mrs. & Mr. Robert Edward Kroll • Janet & Marcos Maestre • Helen Marcus in memory of David Williamson • Jan & Michael McCutcheon • Bebe & Colin McRae • Meyer Sound Laboratories, Inc. •  Marcia Muggli & Ed Osborn • Music Performance Trust Fund • National Endowment for the Arts • The Nint Foundation • Bernard Osher Foundation • Mary & Thomas Reicher • Marc A. Roth • Tricia Swift • Alison Teeman & Michael Yovino-Young • Thornwall Properties • Thurnauer Charitable Trust • Jim Tibbs & Philip Anderson • Union Bank Foundation • Anne & Craig Van Dyke • The Rudolph & Lentilhon G. von Fluegge Foundation, Inc. • Bernard E & Alba Witkin Charitable Foundation • S. Shariq Yosufzai & Brian James
Thanks also to those giving up to $1,000 annually


Gertrude Allen • Annette Campbell-White & Ruedi Naumann-Etienne • Margaret Dorfman • Ann & Gordon Getty • Jill Grossman • Kathleen G. Henschel & John Dewes • Edith Jackson & Thomas W. Richardson • Sarah Coade Mandell & Peter Mandell • Tricia Swift • Shariq Yosufzai & Brian James
Sponsors Panel Include


Event List Include