General Knowledge Workshops: The Orchestra

1 day, 9:15 am - 4:00 pm

Degas: The Orchestra at the Opera

This workshop examines the instruments of the orchestra, how they work, how composers use them, and the sounds they can achieve. It will help developing musicians to understand the breadth and richness of classical music.
For high school students, aged 12 to 18
Cost: $100

You may use your Creative Kids Voucher for this workshop. Contact Susan if you would be interested in attending this workshop.
You may use your Creative Kids voucher for a one-to-one theory lesson, if you prefer.

Course Outline

Session 1

  • Discussion: The Colour of Sound
  • What is a Symphony Orchestra?
  • Families of Instruments
  • The String Family
  • Violin, viola, cello, double bass
  • The harp and the lute

Session 2

  • The Woodwind Family
  • Flute, oboe, clarinet and bassoon
  • The saxophone and the recorder
  • A Brief History of the Orchestra
  • The Chamber Orchestra

Session 3

  • The Brass Family
  • Trumpet, trombone, tuba and horn
  • Other brass instruments
  • Orchestration: Arranging for Orchestra

Session 4

  • The Percussion Family
  • Tuned percussion instruments
  • Untuned percussion instruments
  • Conductors and Conducting
  • What conductors do
  • Summing up

Other Workshops

Full Day Workshops

Half Day Workshops

General information about the workshops


“This session was very engaging and interesting. Topics covered were very relevant and useful in understanding components of the orchestra other than our own instruments”

“This was a great course for those who want to learn the basics of instruments and conducting”

About Susan Deas

Susan Deas is a professional musician, lecturer and teacher. She has been teaching piano and music theory for over twenty years, and is accredited in both Piano and Musicianship. Her training includes a Bachelor of Music with a major in Performance (Piano) and Musicology, a Master of Music Studies (Studio Pedagogy), a Bachelor of Arts (Communications), and an A.Mus.A in Musicianship. Susan also lectures in music theory and music appreciation for Sydney University’s Centre for Continuing Education, WEA Sydney and at other venues. She performs professionally as a pianist and organist, as well as giving professional development workshops and lessons to private music teachers. Susan is on the Board of the Music Teachers’ Association of NSW.

More about Susan's qualifications

Subscribe to Susan's mailing list to hear about future events for music students