KSO 2018-19 Annual Fund Campaign

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Julian Kuerti Appointed KSO Music Director
Julian Kuerti Appointed KSO Music Director

The Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra Board of Directors and President & CEO, Peter H. Gistelinck, are pleased to announce that internationally renowned conductor Julian Kuerti has been appointed as its new Music Director. Mr. Kuerti will assume the title of Music Director beginning with the 2018-2019 season, succeeding Raymond Harvey, who ended his eighteen-year tenure with the orchestra in 2017, and has since then become the Orchestra's first Music Director Emeritus.

Press Release

Single Tickets on Sale August 20th
Single Tickets on Sale August 20th

Single tickets for our 98th season, 2018-2019, go on sale August 20. This season, we will "take note" of great masterworks, with an emphasis on French and female composers, feature famed guest artists, present two blockbuster film concerts, and welcome our new music director, Julian Kuerti, to the podium. View our new season to purchase Symphonic or Zhang Financial Pops! subscription packages, or to create your own subscription package. Single tickets are available to purchase on August 20.


KSO in the Class Room
KSO in the Classroom

A collaboration of KSO and Crescendo Academy of Music, Marvelous Music, is a program that reaches over 600 students in 41 classrooms. Using the internationally recognized Muisc Together(R) curriculum, the program builds social-emotional skills (active participation, focus, expression) and Kindergarten readiness skills (motor skills, musical aptitude, pre-reading skills) through music and movement.


  • KSO Artists in Rsidence
    KSO Artists in Rsidence

    In 1995, as part of the 75th anniversary celebration of the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, a commitment was made to develop four full-time positions that would both enable the orchestra to create community service and education programs and strengthen the orchestra ensemble.

    To this end, the Artist in Residence program was begun with the KSO's Burdick-Thorne String Quartet. Since that time, the Artist in Residence program has grown to eight positions; including oboe, clarinet, trombone, and timpani. As a result, the artistic level of the orchestra has soared, and the KSO's education and community programs have expanded to reach over 45,000 people and more than 190 schools in eight counties throughout Southwest Michigan.

    Our current Artists in Residence are:

    Julia Neckermann, Violin
    Lisa A. Williams, Violin
    Grace Byrd, Viola (on leave)
    Igor Cetkovic, Cello
    Gabriel Renteria, Principal Oboe
    Georgiy Borisov, Principal Clarinet
    Edward "Kip" Hickman, Trombone
    Mark Guthrie, Timpani

  • Get to know your orchestra!
    Get to know your orchestra!

    Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra musicians are the heart of our organization.

    Learn more about our talented musicians, KSO's Resident Conductor/Interim Music Director Daniel Brier and our Music Director Emeritus Raymond Harvey.

  • KSO in your community!
    KSO in your Community!

    We LOVE our community. You will find your KSO musicians peforming free public concerts in venues such as Bronson's Garden Atrium, Borgess' Atrium Lobby, First Presbyterian Church of Kalamazoo, Sarkozy Bakery, and Kalamazoo Public Library, and that is just to name a few!

    We are also excited to bring our beloved Instrument Petting Zoo to many local events throughout the year. Fun for kids of all ages!

    Check out our Community Events Calendar for a complete calendar of events.  Or click here for a downloadable PDF of KSO ensemble performances.

Welcome to the KSO!

Experience the magic - passion, energy, artistry, joy, community - Season 98 - Take Note

Our 98th season, 2018-2019, will "take note" of great masterworks, with an emphasis on French and female composers, feature famed guest artists, present two blockbuster film concerts and welcome a new music director to the podium (June).

Our Symphonic Series will explore the fifth symphonies of Schubert, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, and Sibelius, all composed after Beethoven's fifth, which had set a difficult precedent for future composers' fifths. In keeping with the season's theme, French masterworks bookend the Symphonic Series and will continue to be exhibited in the Classics Uncorked, Classics On Tap and Community Events Series. We are excited to welcome several sensational guest artists and soloists in this series: Di Wu, Piano; Pablo Sáinz Villegas, Guitar; Nina Kotova, Cello; 2018 Stulberg International String Competition Gold Medalist (TBD); Georgiy Borisov, KSO Principal Clarinet; Bramwell Tovey, Guest Conductor; and former KSO Concertmaster, Susie Park, Violin. Don't forget the Wiser Financial Prelude at 7pm before each of our Symphonic Series concerts, so arrive early!

As we continue expanding our programming to embrace the whole of our diverse community, the symphonic, chamber, educational, pops, and community event programming will feature several works by women composers including Anna Clyne, Jennifer Higdon and Jessie Montgomery. The Zhang Financial Pops! series presents "Women Rock," a program celebrating some of the biggest names in female singer/songwriter history, such as Carole King, Tina Turner, Aretha Franklin, Minnie Riperton, and Heart, just to name a few.

From the big screen to television, orchestras provide the soundtrack to modern life. Season 98 celebrates great musical moments in cinematic history with works by early Hollywood masters such as Erich Korngold, Elmer Bernstein and André Previn. KSO@The Movies brings John Williams' incredible scores to life with live orchestra as audiences enjoy two classics - Jaws and Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back – on the big screen. A special appearance by popular television personality, Paul Shaffer (Late Night with David Letterman), will add even more Hollywood flair to the KSO's Zhang Pops! Series!

New this season - patrons will have additional opportunities to join KSO Artists In Residence for our popular Classics Uncorked chamber concerts. These performances will move to the Judy K. Jolliffe Theatre in downtown Kalamazoo's Epic Center. This intimate and jazzy atmosphere will enhance the experience and an added performance will allow greater access to these consistently sold out concerts. Enjoy wine, dessert and coffee with performances at both 3pm and 8pm with sommelier Ron Merlino's Wine Prelude at 2 & 7. Classics On Tap has moved to Fridays, but remains at Bell's Eccentric Café offering the same repertoire as Saturday's Uncorked concert but with dozens of Bell's delicious beers on tap.

Make sure to check out our new subscription options.  The purchase of any three concerts in the season makes you a Create-Your-Own Subscriber and enjoy preferred seating, worry-free exchanges and discounts on most tickets.
We hope you will take a few moments to explore our site and learn more about our history, education programs, concert series, our new Music Director (when appointed) and, of course, our talented musicians. We’re committed to ensuring symphonic music is part of everyday life in our community through outstanding musical listening and learning experiences. We look forward to seeing you in the concert hall!