The project “How an orchestra works” is based on the work The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, Op. 34, written by Benjamin Britten in 1945.
The work was commissioned from the composer to be included in the educational documentary Os Instrumentos da Orquestra, presented to the public in November 1946.
In the vein of Peter and the Wolf, by Prokofiev or Carnival of the Animals, by Saint-Saëns, this work is aimed at a young audience to which it seeks to make the Orchestra, its composition and operation known.
The concert begins with the presentation of the Orchestra’s various sections and instruments to the public, then moving on to the presentation of themes played by the entire Orchestra. Children discover how the orchestra is composed, how it works and then have the chance to see it perform songs known to the general public.
All this work is facilitated by a presenter who will interact with the audience, which is one of the strongest weapons in the pedagogical aspect of this concept – the audience (usually children) are not mere spectators: they are an integral part of the show.
The main objective of this project is simple: to promote education through the arts, a concept that has been gaining some dimension in Portugal.