The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra has received $950,000 from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support the growth of its BSO Academy programme for adult amateur musicians.

The BSO Academy began in June 2010 as a week-long immersive programme giving amateurs the opportunity to learn from and play alongside members of the orchestra. The first programme had 47 participants. By June 2012 the number had grown to 107 players from across the US.

The orchestra will use a $900,000 grant from the Mellon Foundation to develop the Academy over the next three years, and also introduce year-round educational opportunities for amateur musicians. The Mellon Foundation awarded an additional $50,000 to support scholarships aimed at making the programme more inclusive.