100th Anniversary Campaign | Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra
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100th Anniversary Campaign

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The Music Connects Us campaign will raise $8.8 million to ensure a vibrant future for the musical offerings and programs enjoyed by 50,000 concertgoers and 30,000 students every year. Your support, now, more than ever, will help us reimagine our future together. As we reach beyond the boundaries of music, your donation will allow us to create free and equitable access to performances for all, generate and sustain musical jobs, and connect more deeply and broadly throughout the Kalamazoo region. Thank you for considering a gift today to the Music Connects Us campaign!

We’ve reached 70% of our goal – will you make a meaningful gift today to help secure the KSO’s future in our community for the next 100 years?

How your gift makes an impact

• Your gift of $100 provides the resources for expanded and enhanced community engagement programs.

• Your gift of $500 puts teaching artists in our local schools and in summer programs that introduce students and youth to the joys of music.

• Your gift of $1,000 supports our 84+ local and regional musicians, world-class guest artists, and great masterpieces like Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.

• Your leadership gift of $10,000 or more secures our artistic and educational programs for generations to come. Gifts of $30,000+ will be recognized with a 25-year naming opportunity.

Community Engagement

Artistic Excellence

We will enhance our artistic excellence through exceptional, impactful collaborations, by diversifying our musical offerings, and featuring top talent from around the world. We will develop signature projects that showcase the KSO in our community, and invest in artistic infrastructure needed for the highest quality of performances with KSO musicians.

Community Engagement

Community Engagement

The KSO will continue to build a culture of musical listening and learning experiences through engagement, awareness, and access to musical opportunity. We will integrate youth and adult music education opportunities into our mainstage partnership and programming, diversify our activities so all members of our community feel welcome to participate, and we’ll explore new locations for performances around our community to bring music to as many people as possible.

Long Term Financial Stability

Financial Sustainability

As we enter the next 100 years, the KSO will focus efforts on long-term sustainability so that we can ensure continuity and reach of offerings for generations to come. Your generosity today means that programs we execute now – for students and patrons alike – can continue to grow and develop to reach their full potential as our community evolves and changes, too. Your support will help us foster a positive culture for employees and musicians, create important arts jobs for our community, and help us give back to the Kalamazoo area directly through education and musical partnerships.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

The KSO adopted a DEI Charter of action and commitment in June 2021, and will continue this essential work in governance and leadership, artistic engagement, and in the community.

How You Can Help

• A one-time gift
• A multiple-year pledge commitment
(may be paid over a three-year period)
• A gift of appreciated assets (e.g., stock)
• An estate gift

The Music Connects Us 100th Anniversary Campaign is an endowment campaign that will support two funds:

• 100th Anniversary Artistic & Operations Fund: This essential fund directly supports KSO musicians, concerts and education, and the general operating work of the KSO so that we can continue to offer programs for the next century.

• 100th Anniversary Education Fund: This fund directly supports education programs and KSO musicians’ community engagement work.

100 donor benefits

Make an Online Gift Today!

For more information contact: Christopher Schram, Director of Development

Securing a Vibrant Future

Our Vision: Symphonic music is a part of everyday life throughout our community.
Our Mission:
To serve our community through outstanding musical listening and learning experiences.

In our community and on the stage, Music Connects Us in our daily lives through artistry and education.

• Every weekday, KSO musicians engage with students through classroom-based programming, instrument petting zoos, and Musical Storybooks.

• Four days a week, over 100 students participate in Kids In Tune, an afterschool orchestra program for elementary and middle school children.

• Every week, 500+ preschoolers gain critical learning skills through Marvelous Music classes.

• Every month, audiences experience inspiring performances of great musical masterpieces with world-renowned soloists.

• And every year, the KSO presents youth concerts to more than 13,000 students, along with dozens of chamber music events in churches, libraries, hospitals and senior living facilities to connect with you.

campaign chairs

Music Connects Us Campaign Chairs (L-R): Barry Ross, Jane Rooks Ross, Ken Miller

Investing in the KSO’s next 100 years is an investment in the future of outstanding musical experiences for Kalamazoo and Southwest Michigan. The KSO remains vital to the quality of life in Kalamazoo and throughout the region, supplying lifelong musical experiences and learning for all ages. Your gift will help bring compelling concerts, exceptional guest artists, and local and regional musicians into the community’s cultural fabric for years to come. You will also ensure that the KSO’s education programs will address needs for equitable access to the arts.

Make an Online Gift Today!

Now Available! KSO Commerative 100th Anniversary Book

KSO Commemorative 100th Anniversary BookAs we celebrate KSO’s auspicious 100th Anniversary, we are thrilled to give you this beautifully crafted story of our orchestra, 100 Years of Great Music: Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra by Zaide Pixley and Jane Rooks Ross.

Drawing on the voices of musicians, conductors, community leaders, patrons, and staff, and enhancing the narrative with pictures and references to repertoire, 100 Years of Great Music tells the KSO’s compelling story of people determined to have great orchestra music and musicians in Kalamazoo. In every decade, local leaders and supporters met the challenges and maximized the opportunities of their time to make this remarkable orchestra a vital part of our community.

100 Years of Great Music: Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra has two parts.

· Part I: “Great Ensemble” (1921-1996), written for KSO’s 75th Anniversary by Zaide Pixley (pp. 1-93).

· Part II: “Great Music” (1997-2021), written by Jane Rooks Ross and Zaide Pixley, completes the 100-year history (pp. 94-194).

Now, as we celebrate the KSO’s centennial, we are on stage, and in the community, and actively collaborating with other Kalamazoo area organizations to inspire, educate, and connect our residents through the joy of sharing live orchestral music.

View online version of KSO 100th Anniversary Book