Kohl for Kids

From its inception, Music at Kohl Mansion has considered music education for children a central part of its mission. Music-making engages the entire brain: students with experience in the arts score highest on tests of creativity, expression and problem-solving. Establishing a vital and engaging relationship with music gives students a gift that will continue to enrich and delight them for life.


Children’s Concerts


Children’s Concerts are 45-minute weekday presentations at Kohl Mansion designed for elementary and pre-schooled aged students. Fast-paced and lively, these performance by professional musicians/educators engage the very youngest audiences through participatory games, songs, and movement. They are ideal for class or group field trips, as well as individual families. Children’s Concerts are offered at the subsidized ticket price of $6 per child or accompanying adult.



Music-in-Schools brings renowned professional musicians into San Mateo County public elementary schools for assembly performances and workshops. These theme-based programs are coordinated to grade-appropriate curriculum standards. They are designed to captivate students’ imagination, improve their listening and playing skills, and prepare them for lifelong appreciation in artistic and cultural activities. Music-in-Schools is the only outside source of chamber music performance and education in the public school districts we serve. There is no cost for students to participate in the Music-in-Schools program.

Music at Kohl Mansion has supplemented school programs in a variety of ways:

  • Over 36 interactive workshops and 30 classroom sessions per year for more than 4,500 San Mateo County children
  • 10 master classes in middle and high schools
  • Study guides tied to California reading, math and science curricula
  • Children’s Concerts—45 minutes of musical entertainment for children of all ages
  • Over 50,000 children have benefited in the past 10 years. We intend to fulfill this mission for many more years to come.

Our Music-in-Schools Artists:

Dawn Harms


Dawn Harms leads a richly diverse career ranging from chamber musician and concertmaster to violin soloist and conductor. Dawn is a member of the San Francisco Opera Orchestra and also holds the positions of Associate Concertmaster for the New Century Chamber Orchestra and Co-Concertmaster of the Oakland East Bay Symphony. She was recently named Music Director for the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony.

A strong advocate for Music Education, Dawn designs and performs her own family performances throughout the United States and internationally. She also serves on the faculty of Stanford University.

Huckleberry Quartet


Four professional musicians from diverse musical traditions came together to form the Huckleberry Quartet. The members of the quartet have played in symphony orchestras, jazz ensembles, rock bands, opera orchestras, and various chamber groups. This unique blend of musical traditions has resulted in a quartet that has a diverse and exciting repertoire presented in a lively and entertaining style.

Their presentations are carefully linked with existing school curriculum. With experience with many major Bay Area music organizations, they know what works. They want to get kids excited about music, show teachers the many ways that chamber music relates to their curriculum, and connect interested kids with resources to learn an instrument.

Huckleberry Quartet: : Carla Picchi, Graham Patzner, violins; Ilana Matfis, viola; and Lewis Patzner, cello

Quartet San Francisco


Non-traditional in their delivery, Quartet San Francisco redefines the sound of chamber music. Three-time Grammy nominees, QSF expresses itself in its agility and standout virtuosic playing. The quartet was founded in 2001 by celebrated Bay Area violinist and composer-arranger Jeremy Cohen. He is joined by violinist Matthew Szemela, violist Chad Kaltinger, and cellist Andres Vera.  As crossover specialists QSF excels in multiple styles — from jazz to tango, pop to funk, blues to bluegrass, gypsy swing to big band and beyond.

Young Chamber Musicians in Residence at Music at Kohl Mansion


Partners in music education since early 2011, Music at Kohl Mansion and Young Chamber Musicians present a series of admission-free public programs at the Kohl Mansion and in the community. These programs showcase talented student chamber musicians in performances and master classes with distinguished guest artists.

About Young Chamber Musicians


Young Chamber Musicians, created and directed by violist Susan Bates, offers advanced chamber music instruction and exciting performance opportunities for string players and pianists ages 14-20.

The curriculum includes weekly coaching and group rehearsal, master classes by renowned chamber music artists from near and far, student performance opportunities and exposure to professional concerts that engage students as both performers and listeners.

The program immerses students in the chamber music repertoire to develop ensemble skills; encourage musical imagination; and, experience the art of working with others.

Young Chamber Musicians work in collaboration with Music at Kohl mansion and performs in the Mansion’s Library and Great Hall in the program’s public master classes, overture performances and the annual Finale Concert. Through Music at Kohl’s Carlstrom Student Ticket Program, YCM students attend chamber concerts free of charge.

Young Chamber Musicians is led by long-standing champion of chamber music education, Susan Bates with guest appearances by noted chamber music artists from near and far. Ms. Bates holds the 1992 award for “Excellence in Chamber Music Training” from Chamber Music America; and since 1982, she has guided numerous young musicians who are now pursuing careers as professional musicians and playing chamber music “for the love of it”.

Website: http://youngchambermusicians.org

Calendar of Events

Sunday, November 15, 2015, 5 pm 
Kohl Mansion Library
Public Master Class with the Catalyst Quartet

Sunday, December 20, 2015, 5 pm
Kohl Mansion Library
Public Master Class with the Altius Quartet

Sunday, March 20, 2016, 5 pm
Kohl Mansion Library
Public Master Class with the Lysander Piano Trio

Sunday, April 3, 2016, 5 pm
Kohl Mansion Library
Public Master Class with the Israeli Chamber Project

Sunday, April 17, 2016, 5 pm
Kohl Mansion Library
Public Master Class with the Harlem Quartet

Sunday, May 1, 2016, 5 pm
Kohl Mansion Library
Public Master Class with Trio Con Brio Copenhagen

Saturday, May 21, 2016, 1 pm
San Mateo Public Library, 55 W. 3rd St., San Mateo
Young Chamber Musicians in Concert
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