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Adult Enrichment

Behind the Notes

The Lifelong Learning Institute hosts Maestro Raffaele Ponti for a Friday afternoon lecture series prior to each concert weekend of our regular subscription series. The program is designed to enhance music appreciation, active listening skills, and general knowledge of classical orchestral music — through a lively and entertaining format.

Maestro Ponti is known for his personal, fun-loving presentation style, including extensive Q&A. One patron explains “My wife talked me into going to a class. I admit I wasn’t up for it. But now I wouldn’t miss one! So much fun, so interesting, and Ponti is a riot!” Our contracted internationally-acclaimed Guest Artists also perform and participate.

Behind the Notes is held in the auditorium at the Florida Southwestern State College Charlotte Campus, beginning at 4:00pm. Admission is $20/person. Pre-registration may be made online at www.lifelonglearning-charlotte.org.

Pre-Performance Talks

Local radio personality John Davis presents our entertaining Pre-Performance Talks.

Join John Davis from WGCU’s Gulf Coast Live and NPR’s Morning Edition at Charlotte Performing Arts Center one hour before select concerts for a free pre-performance talk! 

Musical Conversations is designed to enhance your enjoyment of the concert by providing insights into the works on the program. The pre-performance talk will feature interviews with internationally-acclaimed visiting Guest Artists and PGSymphony musicians. John Davis crafts these conversations to provide a personal experience with our musicians and to illuminate the music they will be performing. 

Be sure to check our events calendar online to view whether the concert includes a Musical Conversations pre-talk.

Medical Grand Rounds

Founded and coordinated by local neurologist Dr. Ramon A. Gil, Medical Grand Rounds is an innovative lecture series on the intersection of medicine and music, held as a Saturday luncheon to benefit the Punta Gorda Symphony.

Sponsored in part by local doctors, medical practices, and the medical industry, recent speakers have included a jazz pianist who finds inspiration in genetic exploration, and a specialist who illustrates the concept of neurofeedback by drawing an analogy between the human brain and an orchestra.

Stay tuned to PGSymphony email and social media for scheduling of these three annual lectures, or visit our calendar. Medical Grand Rounds lectures are $50/person, and include cocktails and lunch.

Youth Education

Link Up Young People’s Concert

Charlotte County third-graders playing recorder in the 2020 Link Up concert.

In partnership with Carnegie Hall and its Link Up curriculum, Punta Gorda Symphony creates an interactive concert experience with 1,200 third-graders from all Charlotte County schools, both public and private. 

Over the course of five months, teachers lead students through the Carnegie Hall Link Up curriculum, teaching them how to read and follow music, how to play a melody on the recorder, how to work together as fellow musicians, and how to play as an orchestra, among other skills. The 2020 curriculum, “The Orchestra Swings,” also introduced the nuances of swing rhythm and the distinctions between symphonic and jazz music.

The orchestra can be a mysterious and magical unknown to many children. Afraid of a concert where everyone must sit still, this interactive concert format illustrates that an orchestra performance can be fun and engaging. Through the Link Up repertoire, hands-on activities, and the culminating interactive performance, students discovered how an orchestra performs and what it is like to become part of a performing group. This participatory experience helps children understand classical music, and demystifies the symphony from an aristocratic experience to one within reach of all children and families.

The 2020 Link Up concert was funded in part by Charlotte Community Foundation and the State of Florida – Division of Cultural Affairs.

Hope Academy of Music

Hope Academy of Music lends music instruments to interested students and provides weekly group instruction in after-school classes at participating schools in Charlotte County. Founded in 2015, Punta Gorda Symphony adopted the program in the fall of 2019 and began overseeing operations and administration. Hope Academy of Music is funded by a grant from the State of Florida – Division of Cultural Affairs.

Summer Music Camp Becomes Virtual Music Camp

Maestro Raffaele Ponti gets an ear-full at our 2019 Summer Music Camp.

Considering the ongoing concerns about COVID-19 infection rates, Punta Gorda Symphony has chosen to exercise caution through the summer as relates to public gatherings. In place of its normal two-week in-person camp, PGSymphony will provide online music instruction in small groups to interested youth. Registration to Virtual Music Camp is open to all Grade 4-12 beginner, intermediate, and advanced students with access to the internet.

Under regular circumstances, we host our popular Summer Music Camp at the Punta Gorda Middle School in collaboration with Charlotte Players, for students in grades 1-12 from area schools. Youth from beginner to advanced learn to play an instrument, and enjoy classes in music theory, ensemble, chorus, and rhythm and movement. Registration is open to all students in Charlotte County, regardless of economic circumstances. Historically, between 10-15% of campers receive full scholarships, funded by the generosity of local residents and community organizations.



Punta Gorda Symphony Friends is our volunteer affiliate group that organizes social and volunteer activities to benefit, promote, and serve the PGSymphony while providing friendship through a common interest. They play a vital role in the lobby at all performances, behind the scenes with administrative projects, and in organizing regular annual activities to benefit the PGSymphony.

Help create the fun with a first-time Symphony Friends membership of $50, and annual renewals of only $35. Check our calendar for upcoming events. Join by calling the office at 941-205-5996 or emailing anne@PGSymphony.org.

Composers Luncheon

Symphony Friends presents an enlightening introduction to the composers featured in the Punta Gorda Symphony concert programs. Composers Luncheons are planned for the first Thursday of the month November through March. The cost of $15 includes lunch with a glass of wine and a contribution to the Punta Gorda Symphony. Pre-register by calling the office at 941-205-5996.


PGSymphony String Trio Performs at the Peace River Botanical & Sculpture Gardens.

Punta Gorda Symphony Chamber Ensembles are now available for hire!

You can be the one to bring quality live music to the events in your life. Contact us for information on booking strings, brass, woodwinds, and percussion. Available for civic, business, and private events across Charlotte County and neighboring communities.

For more information, call 941-205-5996 or email info@PGSymphony.org.