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Mobile Symphony OrchestraMobile, AL
The Mobile Symphony Orchestra enhances lives by achieving the highest standards in live symphonic music and music education.
Mobile Symphony was formed in 1997 to serve the cultural, educational, quality of life and economic development needs of the Mobile Bay community. Since that time, the MSO has grown into the leading provider of orchestral music on the central Gulf Coast and the area’s largest performing arts organization. The quality of our orchestra and programming equal that of larger symphonies in much larger metropolitan areas.
In 2001 we hired our first music director, Scott Speck, who brings the MSO, our musicians and our audiences a high level of enthusiasm and musicianship. Co-author of Classical Music for Dummies, Mr. Speck creates excitement and accessibility among both novice and experienced listeners.
Since our founding, we have aimed to serve our audiences with standard and lesser known works in the orchestral repertoire. We are also committed to the continual expansion of our artistic boundaries through the performance and creation of new music. Because this region does not have as many resources and cultural opportunities as those found in larger communities, Mobile Symphony is the primary source of exposure for modern classical music in southwest Alabama. We design our new music endeavors so that they engage our audiences and cultivate an understanding and appreciation for contemporary works.
Not long after our founding, Mobile Symphony engaged in a three-year composer-in-residence program featuring some of today’s most sought-after composers early in their careers: Mason Bates, Kevin Puts and Kenji Bunch.
We make new music and its creators accessible by organizing outreach and educational events in the community, most recently a public discussion about video game music with Austin Wintory before our 2017 performance of his Assassin Dances, which was the second concert performance of the piece.
Launched with a generous $40,000 gift in 2018, Mobile Symphony’s Symphonic Innovations initiative is dedicated to performing and commissioning new works. The 2018-2019 season includes the performance of four contemporary pieces. Symphonic Innovations will help fund the commission and premiere of a new orchestral work by Austin Wintory in 2019 and the co-commission with the Munich Philharmonic of a mandolin concerto by Jennifer Higdon.
“We will produce as many concerts as this community will support, and we will explore and expand our artistic boundaries as far as the community will venture.”
– Celia Mann Baehr, Mobile Symphony President/CEO
Mobile Symphony provides music education services that are not being met by any other organization in lower Alabama. Our award-winning, weekly education programs currently reach children in 19 partner schools with strings lessons and/or general music classes. Our in-school violin, viola and cello lessons are the only instrument classes offered in our public elementary schools. We introduce thousands of children to classical performance through our Young People’s Concerts, in-school performances, free Big Red Tickets for children attending classical concerts and $10 student tickets. Higher level instrumental and ensemble training is offered through our String Academy and our Mobile Symphony Youth Orchestra, an audition-only orchestra that draws the most talented students from a three-state area. The MSYO gives back to the community through excellent performance in venues throughout the area.
Mobile Symphony Performs Barber’s Knoxville with Julia Bullock
Knoxville: Summer of 1915
Scott Speck, Conductor
Julia Bullock, Soprano
Mobile Symphony Orchestra
January 17, 2016
American Masters Concert: Into the 21st Century
Mobile Symphony performs Christopher Rouse’s Rapture
Scott Speck, Conductor
January 17, 2016
American Masters Series Concert
MSO: Beethoven & Blue Jeans Interview
MSO’s Music Director Scott Speck and MSO’s general manager and principal clarinetist, J.c. Barker, discuss our annual Beethoven and Blue Jeans concert. Beethoven’s Sixth and classical music’s coolest young trio, Time for Three, combine for our best casual concert yet!