“Our students leave here empowered, they leave here having experienced joy.”
—Ezechial Thurman, teacher at Hill-Freedman World Academy
What happens when exceptional artistry meets hands-on participation meets a world-class venue? WCL Education’s (formerly LiveConnections) signature Bridge Sessions combine all three, creating a high-impact music experience for students from public schools and people with disabilities.
Artists collaborate across diverse music traditions — blues, classical, gospel, hip-hop, jazz, pop, rock, Latin American, Middle Eastern and West African, to name a few — to create sessions with topics such as “World of Percussion,” “Cybersounds” and “Voices & Bodies in Social Action.”
The sessions mix performance with interactive activities. They provide multiple ways for participants to engage in music-making themselves, through call and response, movement, playing percussion instruments, creating rhythm poems and more. Sessions can easily be adapted to the age/level of the participants.
In addition to introducing basic elements of music, sessions also connect with classroom subjects such as language arts and social studies. Our culturally relevant topics engage participants in thinking about teamwork, creativity, diversity and identity.
The 75-minute sessions take place at World Cafe Live, where participants enjoy professional sound and lights in one of the region’s top music venues.
WCL Educations’ innovative approach means participants leave feeling inspired, connected to each other and the wider world.
Frequently Asked Questions
When do Bridge Sessions take place?
Bridge Sessions are scheduled from October through May, taking place on weekday mornings during the school day. We typically offer two 75-minute sessions per date, the first starting at 9:30am and the second at 11:15am. See our current schedule for more details.
Where are sessions held?
Sessions are held in the lower level venue at World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut Street, Philadelphia. World Cafe Live is ADA accessible.
How many participants can attend?
We welcome groups of varying sizes from 20-160 people (including participants and chaperones). Sometimes one school fills an entire session; sometimes we have multiple schools/organizations attending the same session. Our maximum capacity is 160 seats.
What ages/grades are sessions geared for?
Bridge Sessions are geared for grades 2-12, although some topics work particularly well for certain age ranges. Most Bridge Sessions can also be adapted for adults with physical or cognitive disabilities. Our program coordinator will work with you to select the best session for your group.
Can I attend multiple sessions?
Yes! We encourage schools to sign up for a sequence of 3 Bridge Sessions throughout the school year, bringing the same group of students each time. This allows students to engage with a wide range of music and topics, and creates an immersive experience.
What is the cost to attend Bridge Sessions?
We are able to offer sessions for FREE for district and charter schools in Philadelphia and we can reimburse school bus costs for those schools. Sessions are also free for human service organizations serving people with disabilities; we ask organizations to cover their own transportation costs. For independent and suburban schools, we suggest a $10/student ticket price.
How do I get a school bus reimbursement?
Schools/organizations are responsible for making all travel arrangements themselves. To receive a reimbursement, please submit a copy of the bus invoice, clearly indicating 1) the amount, 2) to whom the check should be payable, and 3) where to mail the check. Note that we only issue reimbursements and cannot pay bus costs up front. If your school has the budget to cover your own bus costs, we encourage you to do so, so that we can share our resources with schools in greater need.
Can you provide a Certificate of Insurance?
LiveConnections is fully insured and keeps a Certificate of Insurance on file with the School District of Philadelphia. If your school/organization requires a COI, please let us know at least 2 weeks before your session so we have time to turn around the paperwork.
Do you have curriculum resources?
Check out our curriculum pages for detailed information about each session. Feel free to contact us if you have further questions.
Do Bridge Sessions satisfy state education standards?
Bridge Sessions easily intersect with state standards for music education, as well as many other classroom subjects. Feel free to contact us for more information about how any particular session might connect with your classroom curriculum.
What should I know about arriving for my session?
Please plan to arrive 15 minutes prior to your session start time. Because we frequently have multiple schools attending the same session, please contact us if you anticipate being even a few minutes late.
Buses should drop off participants at the main entrance to World Cafe Live/WXPN (3025 Walnut Street), where our staff will greet you and bring you into the venue for seating. At the end of the session, buses should pick up participants from the lower-level side entrance on 31st Street (only accessible from Chestnut Street). See Getting Here for more info.
Teachers/chaperones must accompany participants and be present for the entire session; you are responsible for your participants at all times while they are in the building.
Can you tell me more about accessibility?
Certainly. Please visit our Accessibility page for more info.
How do I sign up?
Contact our program coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org to get started!
Getting Here & Parking
Bridge Sessions are held at World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut Street, Philadelphia. Schools/organizations are responsible for making their own travel arrangements.
Buses should drop off participants at the main entrance to World Cafe Live/WXPN on Walnut Street, where our staff will greet you and bring you into the venue for seating. At the end of the session, buses should pick up participants from the lower-level side entrance on 31st Street (only accessible from Chestnut Street).
Participants with wheelchairs or mobility aids may be dropped off and picked up at the lower-level side entrance on 31st Street. Please enter the building through “Donor Alley” (look for the wall of CDs) and wait in the lower-level lobby to be seated.
There are 30-minute loading zones at both the main entrance and lower-level side entrance. Please leave the loading zone promptly so that other vehicles may use it.
Parking for buses/vans may be available at the lots designated below. Please contact the lots directly for up-to-date information.
is now WCL Education
In 2019, we combined with our long-time partner World Cafe Live to become a single nonprofit organization.
We're proud to continue all of our programs under our new name and logo.