Kansas City Symphony

Kansas City Symphony

Infobox musical artist
Name = Kansas City Symphony

Img_capt = Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts
Img_size =
Landscape =
Background = classical_ensemble
Birth_name =
Alias = KCS
Origin = flagicon|USA Kansas City, Missouri, USA
Genre = Classical
Occupation = Symphony Orchestra
Years_active = 1982–"present"
Label = Classical Digital
Associated_acts = Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Kansas City Ballet
URL = [http://www.kcsymphony.org/ www.kcsymphony.org]
Current_members = Music Director
Michael Stern
Assistant Conductor
Steven Jarvi
Past_members = Founder
R. Crosby Kemper Jr.
Notable_instruments =

The Kansas City Symphony (KCS) is a United States symphony orchestra based in Kansas City, Missouri. The current music director is conductor Michael Stern. The current home of the Symphony is the Lyric Theatre, located in Downtown Kansas City on 11th Street between Wyandotte and Central Streets. In September of 2010, however, the Symphony will move to the new Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, also located downtown.


Kansas City's first symphony orchestra was the Kansas City Philharmonic, founded in 1933 and dissolved in 1982. Only months later, seeing the necessity for a new symphony orchestra, businessman and philanthropist R. Crosby Kemper Jr. founded the Kansas City Symphony. Kemper chose a group of other prominent Kansas Citians, including Hallmark Cards Chairman and CEO Donald J. Hall, Sr. and H&R Block co-founder Henry W. Bloch, to be the founding trustees; together, the first board established the Symphony's initial endowment. They also promulgated the Symphony's mission, to "Advance and advocate the art of classical music for the enrichment of the community."


The Symphony is one of two major symphony orchestras in Missouri, the other being the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra in St. Louis. The Symphony currently has 80 full-time musicians, all area residents. Each year, it plays a 42-week season, which includes subscription concerts, educational concerts, regional and national tours, and public outreach concerts. The Symphony also performs music for the Lyric Opera of Kansas City and the Kansas City Ballet.

In addition to ordinary donations and concert proceeds, the Symphony is supported by seven specialized auxiliary groups. Together, these raise approximately $900,000 each year. Fund-raising events include Kansas City's main debutante ball - the Jewel Ball (which also benefits the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, the Symphony Ball, the Designers' Showhouse (a home renovation expo in Kansas City's Country Club District which chooses one historic home to renovate each year), a Friends of the Symphony Gift Shop, and a docent program for educational concerts. Today, the symphony's annual budget is more than $11 million.

The Symphony released its first compact disc, "American Voices", in 1995, followed by "The Sound of Kansas City", in 2004. Recently, the Symphony released Gordon Chin's "Formosa Seasons" on the Naxos label, and "Shakespeare's Tempest" with Reference Recordings in July 2008. Additionally, the Symphony has participated in two nationally broadcast PBS television specials and has performed on National Public Radio. Every week during the Symphony's season, KCUR-FM 89.3, Kansas City's NPR affiliate, broadcasts highlights of Symphony performances.

Music directors

*2004-present: Michael Stern
*1998-2003: Anne Manson
*1986-1997: William McGlaughlin
*1982-1986: Russell Patterson

External links

* [http://www.kcsymphony.org The Kansas City Symphony (official site)]

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