Volunteer with the Symphony!

The Winston-Salem Symphony has copious volunteer opportunities throughout the entire year—not only during the performing season— and we’d love to have your help! Whether you’re interested in a casual volunteer position or are interested in volunteering once a week or more, we have areas available. Once you’ve read over the projects below, roll up your sleeves and apply! THANK YOU for your help!

Instrument Petting Zoo

Due to an overwhelming (but very exciting!) number of requests by local WSFC Schools and beyond, the Symphony is in URGENT need of volunteers to facilitate our Instrument Petting Zoo program!
Learn more.

P.L.A.Y. Music

Inspired by the El Sistema program in Venezuela, the Piedmont Learning Academy for Youth Music (PLAY Music) is an intensive afterschool program for underserved youth and their families who wish to learn to play an instrument. Volunteers are needed to serve as classroom assistants for the PLAY program for the fall and beyond. Classroom assistants help with behavior management, taking attendance, snack/bathroom breaks and other miscellaneous tasks. If you think you may be interested in this opportunity, email Layne Meredith for more information.
Learn more.

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Music Library:

The WSS maintains a library of orchestra sheet music, chamber music, vocal music, scores, and reference materials. There are many ongoing tasks including inventory, cataloguing, and processing where there are needs for volunteers. Training, when needed, is provided on the job.

Specific music library volunteer opportunities are:

  • Filing and photocopying
  • Typing and data entry
  • Music part preparation (musical knowledge required)
  • Research music works, editions of pieces, etc.
  • Music inventory

Discovery Series Concerts for Kids:

The Winston-Salem Symphony is taking the Discovery Series to new heights! These events require a large number of volunteers to help with the various positions including set-up/clean-up needs, crowd safety, greeting/information, box office and pre-concert activities in which children and their families participate. Discovery Series volunteers should enjoy interacting with children, have an enthusiastic and positive attitude, be able to stand for up to four hours, and be available on weekends.

Specific Discovery Series volunteer opportunities are:

  • Pre-concert activities: Volunteers may be asked to supervise children while they participate in games and crafts that relate to the theme of each concert
  • Set-up/Clean-Up
  • Box office/Will Call
  • Information Table
  • Greeters
  • Safety
  • Deliver flyers to schools and other community centers to promote Discovery performances

Mary Starling Full-Orchestra Educational Performances:

The WS Symphony in-school ensemble performances are a precursor to a full orchestra concert at Reynolds Auditorium. The in-school ensembles are made up of four different performance groups, woodwinds, strings, brass and percussion who all travel to the local elementary schools in the fall. In the spring, the groups come together to form a full orchestra in a performance where the students can now experience how they work together. Through these experiences, 4th and 5th grade students get to learn about and experience the different instrument families of the orchestra in hopes that they will consider signing up for their middle school music classes.

For the Spring Full Orchestra Performances, volunteers are needed to act as school liaisons. One school liaison is assigned to each student group in attendance. This person greets the assigned group upon arrival, escorts them to their seats, and assists the group in exiting the hall and boarding their bus in an orderly fashion.

Instrument Petting Zoo:

The Winston-Salem Symphony presents many instrument petting zoo visits each year in schools, child care facilities, retirement communities, special/education events, and as part of WSS regular programming. The petting zoos give children a hands-on opportunity to learn about musical instruments. Basic knowledge of music/musical instruments is not required. All volunteers are trained on how each instrument works as well as how to hold and make simple sounds which the volunteer will then teach to participants of the petting zoo. Volunteering for the instrument Petting Zoo is a great opportunity for students, future educators, lifelong learners and more.

Specific instrument petting zoo volunteer opportunities are:

  • Transportation of musical instruments to instrument petting zoo location
  • Modeling sound production on instruments
  • Supervising children and guiding their active engagement
  • Adhering to health and safety standards
  • Planning/scheduling the petting zoo
  • Assisting with set-up/clean-up​

Youth Orchestras:

Winston-Salem Symphony Youth Orchestras Program (YOP) strives to foster the greatest artistic and personal development of talented young musicians, by providing them with a musical experience that challenges and develops their musical abilities and creates a lasting sense of pride in their work. The YOP is currently comprised of three orchestras for aspiring musicians in the first through twelfth grades: the Premiere Strings, a strings only orchestra for young musicians who are new to the experience of playing in an ensemble with a conductor, the Youth Philharmonic for intermediate level students and the Youth Symphony for more advanced students. Each orchestra consists of between 30 to 75 members and performs several public concerts annually as well as occasional concerts for special audiences. The Premiere Strings consists of 20-30 members and performs three programs annually. The Volunteers should enjoy working with youth ages 6-18.

The following are specific volunteer needs:

  • Concert and rehearsal set-up and take-down
  • Concert wranglers (assisting with the movement of students on and off the stage during performances)
  • Snack providers
  • Equipment manager (handling and keeping inventory of all equipment and reporting upon repair/condition needs)
  • Office and “Around Town” help
  • Activity Planners and Coordinators (passing out flyers, brochures and speaking on behalf of the group in better educating the community about the program).
  • Sharing YOP information to interested youth/families

Front of House:

Front of House volunteers are the people who “keep the ship running” on performance nights with the help of staff and venue personnel. Here are some ways you can get involved at select concerts:


While most WSS performances are ushered by paid professionals, on occasion volunteers are needed in assisting patrons with locating their seat within the performance hall, finding the restrooms and insuring that audience members have an exceptional concert going experience.

Greeter/Program Distributor

Looking for your first step into volunteering? This position is perfect for you! Come get to know us and the audience by distributing programs and playbills. This position is open to all, even kids as young as 6 at Discovery Series Concerts with proper adult supervision.

Will-Call/Box Office

Be the first smiling face that our eager audience members see as they pick up or purchase tickets for the performance!

Office Needs:

The WSS needs assistance in the completion of various ongoing administrative/clerical tasks and those associated with various Box Office, Marketing and Development mailings and communications. With minimal staff, experienced office volunteers are an important support system for the organization

Specific administrative needs are:

  • Filing and photocopying
  • Typing and data entry
  • Preparation of mailings such as stuffing and sorting envelopes
  • Distributing surveys, assisting individuals with filling out surveys and collecting survey data
  • Symphony Street Team: Deliver flyers, posters, brochures, etc to various locations around the region to promote WS Symphony concerts and events
  • Assistance with archiving materials
  • Receptionist relief
  • Telephone support

Special Events:

On occasion, the WSS hosts receptions and fundraiser/friend-raiser events. For these types of events, volunteer assistance is often needed for the following duties: Assist in setting up for fundraising and social events. This includes moving tables, arranging décor, stocking refreshment tables, organizing materials and signage, and other various tasks. Time commitment can range from 2-6 hours and is often in the evening and on weekends.

Volunteers On Tap:

Often times other needs and spontaneous projects arise! Please let us know if you would like for us to contact you concerning spur of the moment volunteer opportunities.

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This project was supported by the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources. www.NCArts.org

The Winston-Salem Symphony receives operational funding from The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County

Educational initiatives made possible with funding by Wells Fargo, The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County and The Winston-Salem and Forsyth County Schools.