About the Spokane Symphony
The Spokane Symphony continues a long tradition as the largest and most active professional performing arts organization in the Inland Pacific Northwest. The 2015-16 Season marks its 70th year.
The 70-piece professional orchestra performs for more than 150,000 listeners each season and provides a wide variety of exceptional educational experiences. The orchestra presents critically acclaimed performances featuring some of the world's most respected soloists.
The orchestra is led by Eckart Preu, our outstanding Music Director, who has taken the orchestra to the next level of artistic achievement. He was selected from a field of more than 200. He is assisted by Resident Conductor Morihiko Nakahara. Jorge Luis Uzcátegui officially joins the Spokane Symphony as its Assistant Conductor at the start of the 2015-16 Season, having occasionally conducted programs during the previous season.
Originally incorporated in 1945 as the Spokane Philharmonic, it became the Spokane Symphony Society in 1962. Currently, the Symphony performs more than 60 concerts a year. The regular season includes:
- The 10-concert Classics series is dedicated to excellence in Classical music. Thrill to virtuoso solos by world renowned guest artists and breathtaking performances of works by the great masters—and a few emerging composers. Performances are on Saturday evenings and Sunday afternoons at Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox.
- The 6-concert SuperPops series features popular guest artists and a fun variety of musical styles, including Broadway hits, jazz standards and a dazzling entertainment. Performances are on Saturday evenings at Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox, plus a Sunday matinee of our perennial family favorite, the Holiday Pops.
- The 3-concert Symphony with a Splash series is an informal Friday night that’s a fantastic way to kick off the weekend. The fun begins with live music from a local band in the swanky Fox lobby while noshing on Happy Hour food and drink specials. Then enjoy a fabulous one-hour performance by the Spokane Symphony of classical music, both time-honored and cutting edge.
- The beautifully restored Martin Woldson Theater at the Fox is the perfect setting for the 2-concert Symphonic Films at The Fox series, featuring screenings of classic films accompanied by LIVE orchestra soundtrack.
- The 3-concert Chamber Soiree series lets you enjoy the talented musicians of the Spokane Symphony performing an outstanding assortment of baroque, classical and contemporary chamber music. Relax at a table with wine and hors d’oeuvres, or take a seat in the gallery of the Marie Antoinette Ballroom. Performances are on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings in the old world elegance of the Davenport Hotel.
- The 2-concert Soiree on the Edge series is held at Spokane’s most breathtaking outdoor venue—the Arbor Crest lawn overlooking Spokane Valley. Dine al fresco and purchase sumptuous pours from Arbor Crest while the Spokane Symphony creates sublime sunset experiences. Performances are on Wednesday evening.
- The Spokane Symphony also presents a classic holiday tradition— The Nutcracker Ballet, danced to music performed LIVE by the orchestra. Set in the Art Deco grandeur of Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox, the performance features the nationally acclaimed State Street Ballet from Santa Barbara, and more than 75 local dancers.
- Another Spokane holiday favorite is the Symphony’s New Year’s Eve concert featuring Beethoven’s Ninth. A performance of this “Symphony of Symphonies” is part of a growing international tradition that was introduced to Spokane audiences by Music Director Eckart Preu.
The Spokane Symphony is dedicated to cultivating new audiences, both through innovative programming, for which they won an ASCAP award, and collaborative efforts with other arts organizations. These include The Invisible Collection: The Moldenhauer Archive with the Northwest Museum of Art and Culture, Les Misérables with Spokane Civic Theatre, La Boheme with Opera Coeur d'Alene, City Lights with SpIFF and Uncharted Territory with Terrain. The Outreach efforts also includes affordable Family Ticket Packages designed to encourage families to bring their children to concerts, and our popular College Card program. As a further community service; the Classics, Symphony with a Splash and Chamber Soiree concerts are broadcast on 91.1 KPBX-FM.
The Spokane Symphony offers community concerts in alternative venues. Each summer, the Symphony is featured at the Festival at Sandpoint, Idaho. Each Labor Day Weekend, thousands flock to Pavillion Park in Liberty Lake (Saturday) and Comstock Park on Spokane’s South Hill (Monday) to bid farewell to summer in spectacular fashion. Year after year, the Spokane Symphony has delighted audiences with a program of light classics, patriotic tunes and favorites from the worlds of pop, Hollywood and Broadway.
The educational activities offered by the Spokane Symphony include orchestra also performs multiple community and educational concerts during the season, including our Fourth/Fifth Grade Musical Encounter that serves thousands of elementary school children from the Spokane region and northern Idaho. Through Link Up, a program of Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute, The Spokane Symphony pairs with local schools to five students in grade 3-5 the opportunity to explore orchestral repertoire through a hands-on music curriculum, culminating with a concert where they sing and play recorder or violin with the orchestra from their seats. Other Spokane Symphony educational programs include SEED (Symphony Ensembles for Education), an up-close experience with the musicians in a school setting, and Master Classes, one-on-one instruction with Symphony guest artists. The Spokane Symphony is also breaking new ground in the field of distance learning with their work using Internet2.
A non-profit organization, the Spokane Symphony is governed by a 25-member volunteer Board of Trustees. The Symphony also enjoys the generous support of the more than 300-member Spokane Symphony Associates, the Orchestra's volunteer organization.