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submitted by
Lynne Sorkin

Coordinator, School Partnerships | Chicago Symphony Orchestra

TITLE: Coordinator, School Partnerships Revised December 2022

DEPARTMENT: Negaunee Music Institute (the education and community engagement department of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra)


The Negaunee Music Institute (NMI) connects people to the extraordinary musical resources of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO). Institute programs educate audiences, train young musicians, and serve diverse communities across Chicago and around the world.

The Coordinator, School Partnerships plays a key role in building the CSO’s relationships with students and teachers throughout Greater Chicago. Primarily, the person in this position coordinates in-school chamber music performances and mentorship activities led by musicians of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Civic Orchestra. In addition, they connect partner schools to CSO for Kids concerts at Symphony Center, help coordinate tickets and transportation, contribute to the creation and distribution of preparatory materials, support the annual Chicago Youth in Music Festival, and organize select educational activities that occur during CSO concert tours.

Learn more about the Negaunee Music Institute at


1. Manage the CSO Ensemble program, including identification of partner schools, scheduling of in-school chamber concerts, and confirmation of and communication with CSO musicians. Attend all concerts and provide operational support as needed. Liaise with teachers and musicians to ensure performances are maximally educational and engaging.

2. With Civic Orchestra staff, coordinate Civic Orchestra chamber performances and coachings in Chicago Public Schools. Identify partner schools, build the master schedule, audition and select musicians, organize professional development workshops, and liaise with teachers to establish and achieve goals of the partnership.

3. Connect partner schools to CSO for Kids concerts at Symphony Center and help organize tickets and transportation as needed.

4. Coordinate Education Open Rehearsals for high school music students. Support the selection process of rehearsal dates, secure permission from guest conductors, guest artists and the Orchestra, contribute to event promotion, and support Front of House staff on rehearsal days.

5. Prepare and distribute preparatory and other educational support materials.

6. Support planning and implementation of the annual Chicago Youth in Music Festival, as well as educational activities that occur during CSO tours.

7. Ensure school partnerships align with and further the NMI’s diversity, equity and inclusion action plan.

8. Participate in ongoing evaluation and assessment of program impact.

9. Other duties as assigned.

CSOA is an equal opportunity employer where all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment and will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, ancestry, or national or ethnic origin. We value diversity and inclusion and seek to build and maintain a community and culture that celebrates and values diverse backgrounds, identities, and perspectives. We consider equivalent combinations of experience and education for jobs, and all candidates who believe they possess equivalent experience and education are encouraged to apply.


1. Reports to the Director, School and Family Programs. Works closely with Senior Manager, School and Family Programs.

2. Other contacts include: teachers and administrators from schools throughout Greater Chicago, CSO and Civic Orchestra musicians, staff, teaching artists, stagehands, and volunteers.


1. Bachelor’s degree, with formal training in music education and/or performance, or equivalent experience.

2. At least two years of experience organizing educational concerts for children and youth.

3. Demonstrated experience working successfully with professional musicians.

4. Diplomacy and sensitivity in communication with many different constituencies.

5. Knowledge of Chicago neighborhoods and Chicago Public Schools preferred.

6. A passion for orchestral music and music education.

7. Superior written and verbal skills, exceptional attention to detail, organizational and research skills required. Ability to speak publicly with confidence.

8. A valid driver’s license. This position requires frequent commuting to partner schools for program activity.

9. Computer literacy and experience working with Microsoft Office programs including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

10. Flexibility to work some evenings and weekends.


Pleasant office environment. Frequent commuting to schools across Greater Chicago, especially October-May each season.

Contact Info:
Human Resource Department
Job Type: Permanent
Location: Chicago