Our History

Founded in 1951 by Drs. Fred Baumgartner, Kurt Lande and Joseph Bein, as well as Frances Tidings, Harry Carroll, and Al Sutphin, the Symphony has been dedicated to outstanding and uncommon programming. For more than 60 years our community has thrilled to the sounds of international guest artists, the finest musical talent in the region, and renowned conductors.

The 75 member professional orchestra presents ten to twelve concerts annually to packed houses. The Symphony Chorale was formed in 1997, and made its debut at the first Mozart Festival in that same year. In 2005, the Chorale performed under the baton of noted English composer John Rutter, in Carnegie Hall.

HFSO Board

Offerings include the Tillmann Memorial Concert, The Majesty of Christmas, “Picnic and Pops”, the David L. Belew American Masters Series, the Ohio Mozart Festival, The Great Miami Arts Jam and several outdoor summertime performances. The Ohio Mozart Festival is twelve years old, and remains the only one of its kind in the Midwest, attracting an international following.

The David L. Belew “American Masters” series is held in March. This unique event features a week long residency by a distinguished living American composer, culminating in a public performance of some of the master’s greatest works. Featured composers have included Wallace DePue, H. Owen Reed, James Niblock , Thomas Benjamin, Robert Ward and Ronnie Kole.

World Premiers presented include works by Catherine McMichael, Wallace DePue, Paul John Stanbery, Christopher Wilke, Philip Koplow, Thomas Benjamin and Ronnie Kole. It was the American Masters Series that prompted “Symphony Magazine” to call the HFSO: “one of America’s high-octane smaller-budget orchestras” (November-December, 2001).

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