The mission of the Canton Symphony Orchestra is both simple and lofty.
“Perform and present at the highest possible artistic level live orchestral music to enrich, entertain, educate and challenge diverse audiences in a variety of settings.”
The entertainment part of that mission is carried out each performing season through Masterworks and Pops concerts at Zimmermann Symphony Center on the campus of McKinley Senior High School. Outreach into the community comes via musicians playing at libraries, small ensembles performing at downtown venues and the orchestra’s summer serenades in parks. The Symphony’s educational goals are accomplished through such programs as Canton Youth Symphony, Summer Music Camp, Kinder Concert, Young People’s Concert and SymphonyLand.
For those interested in a more scholarly study of the music the symphony plays, a monthly speaker series—ConverZations—provides information-filled, yet casually entertaining discussions of myriad musical topics while audience members enjoy coffee and cookies or brown bag lunches.
This multifaceted approach to increasing the awareness of music in the community is led by Michelle Mullaly, president and CEO of Canton Symphony. She is assisted by a dedicated staff that includes Carol A. Murphy as director of development and Rachel Hagemeier, who is in charge of education and community engagement.
But, as the name on the performance hall suggests, the most visible individual associated with the Canton Symphony is longtime music director Gerhardt Zimmermann, who guides the orchestra with assistant conductor Matthew Jenkins Jaroszewicz and Britt Cooper, director of Canton Symphony Orchestra Chorus.
Zimmermann has been at the musical helm of Canton Symphony for nearly four decades, a tenure that has drawn the Ohio-born conductor rave reviews for his appearance before the orchestra.
“As comfortable with opera as on the concert stage, the Maestro has conducted staged works of Mozart, Verdi, Strauss Jr., Puccini and Gershwin,” notes the symphony’s website.
The force behind the success of the Canton Symphony, however, is made up by its musicians—a talented blend of experienced orchestra professionals and skilled young musicians growing into laudable symphony careers.
Canton Symphony Orchestra’s upcoming performances:
November 9: Masterworks Concert, “Symphonic Storytelling”
November 14: Divergent Sounds Concert, “Rock Meets the Symphony”
December 8: Pops Concert, “Holiday Pops 2019”
Tickets are available by calling the Symphony box office at 330-452-2094, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or visiting cantonsymphony.org.