Groundbreaking. Dynamic. Daring. A tenured orchestra and acclaimed cultural leader that champions diversity, equity, and inclusion by creating community through curated symphonic experiences, Chicago Sinfonietta (CS) is a source of community through music, as well as ensuring and inspiring a continued investment in diversity and inclusivity in the genre of classical music to promote fairness and equity. With core values built around being culturally responsive and advocates of inclusivity in all aspects of the 35 year-old organization’s work, Chicago Sinfonietta’s unrelenting commitment to being at the forefront of innovation drives its high standard of symphonic experiences. CS takes pride in leading by example with immersive audience engagement activities, impactful career development, education, and extensive community outreach programs.
Founded in 1987 by the late Maestro Paul Freeman to address diversity in orchestras, Chicago Sinfonietta has been led by international conductor and Music Director Maestra Mei-Ann Chen since 2011. In her first season, the Sinfonietta was named by ASCAP as the recipient of the 2011- 12 Award for Adventurous Programming, and in 2013 was dubbed, “the city’s hippest orchestra” by Chicago Tribune, before going on to be honored in 2016 with a prestigious MacArthur award. Embracing daring programming has always been part of its history. In turn, audience response has been unprecedented. The legacy, passed to Maestro Chen and all of us at the Sinfonietta, goes far beyond what you will see on stage.
During its rich history, Chicago Sinfonietta has influenced broad cultural change and emerged as an innovator within the classical music industry by presenting provocative programs and by engaging diverse audiences through community partnerships. As we approach 35 years of being on the cutting edge of classical music, we see Maestro Freeman’s vision is just as relevant and crucial today.
Blake-Anthony Johnson, President & CEO
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