Musical residency of the Philharmonie de Paris in New York

The Cité de la musique - Philharmonie de Paris has been committed to music teaching for more than twenty years. It shares its skills in this area in France and internationally, and will notably be doing so at the Lycée Français de New York in March 2017.

The Philharmonie develops collective and oral teaching techniques ranging from artistic and cultural education for young people to training for professionals. It introduces the public, children, families, adults and intergenerational groups to music. It organizes many music-practice workshops on its premises throughout the year – both during the week and at weekends – and also elsewhere, especially with the Démos children’s orchestras that now exist all over France.

140 Students, One Orchestra
An orchestral practice introductory course

Following a meeting between the teams of the Philharmonie de Paris and the Lycée Français de New-York (LFNY) in the spring of 2016, a partnership between the two institutions was planned. It would take the form of an educational musical residency and be part of the ‘Artist in Residence’ program launched by the Lycée Français.
So the educational team of the Philharmonie de Paris will be visiting the LFNY from 12 to 17 March 2017, providing an introduction to orchestral instrumental practice that will end with a public performance in the auditorium of the LFNY on Friday 17 March 2017.

Led by a team of teaching musicians from the Philharmonie de Paris and aimed at a hundred or so pupils in the 5th grade of the Lycée Français, the project has been organized in close cooperation with the Lycée’s teaching staff. The aim is to provide a physical and vocal introduction to music, present orchestral instruments (strings, woodwind and brass) and offer an experience of orchestral music practice. During the residency, the children will have an opportunity to take part in orchestral playing and perform short extracts from symphonic pieces adapted to their level. The teaching musicians of the Philharmonie and the group of teachers from the LFNY will accompany them at the final concert, playing the most advanced parts.

Children from the New York French American Charter School (NYFACS) will be associated with the residency. They will be advised by the teachers of the Philharmonie at a number of sessions, developing a choral practice that will be included in the program of the final performance.


This project is supported by the EHA Foundation.

The project will
  • Contribute to the development of the children’s musical practice by providing them with a special orchestral musical experience that will encourage them to continue their education in this field, especially with classical instruments (strings, wind), if they so wish.
  • Share with the LFNY team (permanent staff, specific teachers, etc.) the collective and oral teaching methods developed for beginners by the Philharmonie.
  • Reinforce the partnership between the LFNY and NYFACS by bringing the children of the two schools together in a joint artistic practice.

Lycée Français de New York
505 East 75th Street
New York, NY 10021-3462

Further information on the ‘Artist in Residence’ project on


We have chosen to present a composite program of works that are very diverse in both their origins and periods. They range from the traditional French repertoire to contemporary American music and also include Hispanic music.

Bransle by Champaigne de Claude Gervaise

Claude Gervaise was a 16th-century Parisian composer. Some musicologists believe he was a musician at the courts of kings François I and Henri II. He wrote several works entitled Danceries, which included the Bransle de Champaigne. Some of those Danceries inspired the Suite Française d’après Claude Gervaise written by Francis Poulenc in 1935. A bransle is a Renaissance dance inspired by the rondes of the Middle Ages..

Video tutorial

Summertime by Georges Gershwin

Summertime is an aria written by Georges Gershwin in 1934 for the folk opera Porgy and Bess, based on the novel Porgy by DuBose Heyward.
The song was a great hit and has since become a jazz standard in itself. It is one of the world’s most covered pieces with more than 33,000 versions to date.
With this song, Gershwin intended to write his own spiritual in the purest tradition of the African-American musical folklore of the day.
Summertime is the first aria of the opera, sung as a lullaby by Clara to her baby.

Video tutorial

America by Leonard Bernstein

America is a choral piece taken from Leonard Bernstein’s lyrical drama West Side Story. Produced for the first time on Broadway in 1957, the work set in 1950s New York revolves around a love story inspired by Romeo and Juliet. America is a dialogue sung by the musical’s Puerto-Rican characters about their living conditions.

The use of Latin percussion and beats by Bernstein lends a very special color to the pro-USA lyrics praising the country’s way of life.

Asturias by Isaac Albeniz

Asturias, subtitled Leyenda, is the most famous piece from the Española piano suite written by Isaac Albéniz and published in Barcelona in 1892.
Despite its name, the piece does not represent the musical folklore of Asturias, but rather Andalusian flamenco. In the main theme, the piano emulates the guitar and suggests the rhythm of a buleria, a fast-paced flamenco. Transcribed and transposed for the guitar, the work has become one of the most widely-played pieces for guitarists. It was used by The Doors on the Spanish Caravan track of their Waiting for the Sun album in 1968.

Training exercices and encore

Watch the videos


See also


Visit the dedicated website of Démos, a cultural democratization project launched and coordinated by the Cité de la musique – Philharmonie de Paris.

Guide d'écoute


On the Eduthèque portal, the Philharmonie de Paris presents a set of first and second-level teaching resources. Eduthèque is produced in partnership with the French Ministry of National Education, Higher Education and Research.