About Pacific Symphony
Founded in 1978, Pacific Symphony inspires, engages, and serves Orange County through exceptional concerts, education and community programs.
Pacific Symphony is a highly dynamic and innovative organization, led artistically by Music Director Carl St. Clair for 30 years and operationally by President John Forsyte for 21 years. It presents more than 100 concerts annually, has been the resident orchestra of the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall for over a decade, and serves 250,000 community members each year. The Symphony is nationally and internationally recognized for performance excellence, strong community engagement through education and other programming, and for commissioned new works by contemporary composers. In April 2018, Pacific Symphony made its debut at Carnegie Hall as one of two orchestras invited to perform during a yearlong celebration of composer Philip Glass’ 80th birthday, and the following month the orchestra toured China.
The orchestra made its national PBS debut in June 2018 on Great Performances with Peter Boyer’s “Ellis Island: The Dream of America.” Pacific Symphony twice received prestigious ASCAP Awards for Adventuresome Programming, and was showcased in the League of American Orchestras' nationally released publication entitled Fearless Journeys.
Pacific Symphony offers was one of the most comprehensive array of education and community engagement programs of any American orchestra. Its flagship Class Act elementary school enrichment program has been honored by the National Endowment for the Arts and the League of American Orchestras for its exemplary orchestra education.
The Symphony is located in Orange County, California's second most populous county boasting a rich arts tradition strongly supported by an engaged public. The region is a tourism magnet, home of Disneyland, and a major financial and business hub.
MISSION, VISION, & VALUES
Pacific Symphony inspires, engages and serves Orange County and the region through exceptional music performances, and education and community programming.
Pacific Symphony leads a renaissance in the appreciation, accessibility and impact of classical music in Orange County and the region, through creativity, responsiveness and innovation.
Excellence: Pacific Symphony strives for the highest quality in performance, community service and organization.
Passion: Pacific Symphony brings determination, great energy and vitality to its work and projects a sense of pride.
Education: Pacific Symphony seeks to ensure greater understanding and appreciation of music by all ages.
Engagement: Pacific Symphony listens to and believes in involving the community, its artists, and volunteers in shaping the future of music and ensuring its impact on the broader community.
Innovation: Pacific Symphony embraces and anticipates change, experiments with new practices, and shapes the future of classical music.
Financial Responsibility: Pacific Symphony generates and stewards programs and resources which meets the needs of present and future generations.
Pacific Symphony is located in Orange County, California's second most populous county boasting a rich arts tradition strongly supported by an engaged public. Orange County envelops the visitor in the ultimate Southern California lifestyle…casual sophistication, pristine beaches, legendary theme parks, and endless options for fun in the sun or cultural exploration. Orange County is known for its ideal year-round climate with an average daily temperature of 70 degrees.
Just minutes from Orange County’s 42 miles of beaches, there are magical adventures and adrenaline pumping rides at the original Disneyland Resort, and the always-thrilling Knott’s Berry Farm. Orange County’s parks offer sprawling wilderness and nature parks, perfect for recreation of the sun-soaked variety, with miles of trails and coastal preserves to explore.
The level of arts and entertainment found Orange County is equally unmatched. For sports fans, Anaheim offers professional baseball, hockey, and indoor soccer, with something for everyone all year round. Costa Mesa is home to the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, the Pacific Symphony’s primary performance venue. Facilities include four theaters and world class offerings. Laguna Beach houses an abundance of thriving art galleries and Orange County’s most famous summer and winter art festivals.
Orange County’s strong university system – including the University of California, Irvine, Cal State Fullerton, and Chapman University – has helped contribute to the fact that 39% of its residents over the age of 25 have a bachelor’s degree or higher, ranking it as one of the top five regions in the nation for college educated residents and number one in California. In addition, Orange County’s economic strength is reflected in its low unemployment rate, which consistently runs lower than that of the statewide average.