Arts, Culture, and Humanities
To transform hearts, minds and communities through the power of symphonic music, accomplished by great performances for greater audiences.
Mr. Frank Byrne
1703 Wyandotte Street Suite 200
Kansas City, MO 64108 USA
Arts/culture, Music Education, Community development, Symphony Orchestra
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This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.
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What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
The Symphony's Classical Series offers 42 performances of 14 different programs that combine timeless classics with pivotal modern works and groundbreaking contemporary pieces, mixing internationally-renowned soloists with rising stars. The four-concert Pops Series draws a diverse audience through programs offering a wide variety of musical styles and nationally-known guest performers. The Family Series consists of shorter concerts in a format that appeals to the young imagination. The free Happy Hour Series consists of several short programs designed to present an informal taste of chamber music. The Classics Uncorked Series offers orchestra concerts that explore repertoire in a casual atmosphere with the opportunity for relaxed social interaction. Our Screenland at the Symphony Series presents classic movies with the score performed live. Holiday programming includes Handel's "Messiah" and Christmas Festival. We also offer numerous special concerts each year featuring top artists.
Symphony education programs enable thousands of students to learn, create and become inspired through orchestral music each year. Through our Instrument Petting Zoo program, thousands of pre-school and elementary children learn about the orchestra and have the opportunity to create sounds on various musical instruments. More than 20,000 young people and chaperones learn about orchestral music in our KinderKonzerts (K-3) and Young People's Concerts (grades 3-6), which are designed specifically for these age groups. More than 2,000 middle and high school students are inspired by hearing virtuosic guest artists and orchestral masterworks at the Symphony's Open Rehearsals. The highly successful Support School Music program brings the Symphony to area schools for rehearsals, classes and a performance which raises money for the school district's music programs. And we are pleased to continue offering the Carnegie Hall-designed program Link Up, an interactive music program that reaches over 9,000 elementary students and teachers each year. Petite Performances are designed for our littlest listeners, ages 0-6, introducing them to orchestral instruments in a fun, interactive program onstage at Helzberg Hall. The Symphony nurtures students of all ages through many opportunities to experience the full spectrum of orchestral music.
Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)
The Symphony's community engagement activities include the annual Bank of America Celebration at the Station, a free, outdoor, family-oriented concert performed during the Memorial Day weekend in front of historic Union Station that draws more than 50,000 each year and is televised across Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, and Nebraska; an annual Cabaret Concert serving the North Kansas City area; and more than 120 Community Connections concerts and programs each year in numerous locations throughout the region. In addition, recordings of performances from the Symphony's Classical Series are broadcast weekly on KCUR-FM, Kansas City's NPR-affiliated radio station.
Where we workNew!
Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
How will they know if they are making progress?
What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
The Kansas City Symphony seeks to transform hearts, minds and our community through the power of symphonic music. The Symphony's objectives include the growth and diversification of our audience, advancing the Symphony's profile in the Kansas City area and beyond, and enhancing the orchestra's artistic achievements and financial stability. Those success indicators will mark the level of engagement and transformation achieved. The arts describe and define us. The core values of a culture are communicated through its art. Music has a unique place among the arts - ephemeral in nature and yet enduring in effect. With symphonic music as one of the crowning achievements of western civilization, the Kansas City Symphony is privileged to share its transformative efforts with people throughout the region and far beyond.
The Symphony will continue to offer an extensive array of concerts across the full spectrum of musical genres, a wide variety of education programs for all ages, and numerous opportunities for community members to engage with the orchestra. Within each strategy, we will strive for excellence in concept, design, and presentation such that the Symphony becomes the arts organization of choice in our community. It is only through experiencing the Symphony that our transformative mission can be accomplished. Through Classical Series programs featuring orchestral masterworks from the past two centuries as well as world premieres of newly-commissioned works to Pops and Special concerts highlighting talented artists of our time, the Symphony's programming is designed to appeal to people of all backgrounds, interests, and levels of experience with symphonic music. In addition, by exploring new presentation formats and pricing, we aim to maximize accessibility for the broadest possible audience. Our engaging Education programs are designed to help students meet state/federal competencies and to spark the imagination for a lifetime of learning and enjoyment. Overall, the Kansas City Symphony will continue to be the engine for the performing arts in Kansas City and the surrounding region.
With a 35-year history of success, the Kansas City Symphony is well-poised to carry out our challenging programs. From a dedicated 28-member board of directors comprised of community leaders to the 35-member professional staff, the Symphony has the leadership and administrative expertise to succeed. Of course, the artistic leadership provided by Music Director Michael Stern has transformed the orchestra into one of the leading ensembles in the United States. Each of the 80 full-time musicians is an artist, committed to performing at the highest possible level. The Symphony's 700 volunteers are devoted to the organization's success and raise more than $1 million each year to support the Symphony's programs. Nearly 5,000 donors believe in the Symphony's mission and capacity, making gifts that have a far-reaching impact. And more than 250,000 people attended or participated in Symphony programs in 2016-2017, affirming broad community interest and belief in the relevance of their experience. The Symphony is successfully concluding the Masterpiece Endowment Campaign, designed to raise $55 million in additional endowment funds to help secure the Symphony's financial ability to carry out its vision. ""It is a true pleasure to read about the health and harmony that reigns at the Kansas City Symphony. The Symphony is balancing its budget and just signed a three-year contract with its musicians. It cannot be easy to achieve balance in the orchestra world today. But clearly, it can be done."" Michael Kaiser former president of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
Through analysis of attendance and revenue benchmarks, we will ascertain level of progress toward numerical goals. Progress toward intangible goals may be inferred from behavioral markers such as social media utilization, continued ability to draw top artists and musicians, positive critical reviews, awards from various sources, and anecdotal accounts. In addition, we maintain close contact with community and business leaders throughout the region, seeking their perceptive analysis of Symphony programs. Constituent surveys also offer a significant level of feedback that indicates progress toward goals.
Our accomplishments include sold-out concerts of superb quality, a Grammy award, new recordings released to critical acclaim and others in post-production, a PBS special televised nationwide to a cumulative audience of 10 million people, renewing the musicians' contract - one year ahead of schedule, achieving small operating surpluses for the past several years, thriving education programs, sustaining a vibrant social media presence, and successfully completing the Masterpiece Endowment Campaign. Still to be accomplished: making the Kansas City Symphony the performing arts organization of choice throughout our community, every student in Greater Kansas City hearing the Symphony live at some point during their school years, and further diversifying concert options so that more people can experience the Symphony in Helzberg Hall.
Affiliations & Memberships
League of American Orchestras
Kansas City Symphony
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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.
as of 9/26/2017
Mr. William M. Lyons
Retired President and CEO, American Century Companies, Inc.
Term: July 2013 - June 2018
Chairman, Richard J. Stern Foundation for the Arts
Shirley & Barnett Helzberg Foundation
Hallmark Cards, Inc.
Retired President and CEO, American Century Investments
Sosland Publishing, Sosland Companies, Inc.
Retired Partner, Ernst & Young LLP
Retired CEO, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City
Treasurer, H&R BLock, Inc.
Former Kansas City Market President, Bank of America
President, KCS Auxiliary Council
Chief Marketing Officer, Perceptive Software
Senior VP and Managing Director, BMO Private Bank in Kansas City
Retired President and CEO, Hallmark Cards, Inc.
Kansas City Symphony Musician; Chair, Musicians' Committee
Kansas City Symphony Musician
Kansas City Symphony Musician
Founder; Loretto Companies, LLC
Vice Chairman; Lead Bank
Vice Chair and Secretary; Ash Grove Cement Company
Founder; Of Counsel, Inc.
Owner; Scandia Home and Terrasi European Collections
Kansas City Symphony musician
CEO, McCownGordon Construction
Retired President and CEO, Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce
Chairman, President and CEO, Great Plains Energy and KCP&L
Elizabeth Gerson Hjalmarson
Brand Manager, Lone Elm Studios, The Gerson Companies
Bebe Kemper Hunt
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?
Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?
Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?
Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?
Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?