aka The Phoenix Symphony   |   Phoenix, AZ   |


Mission: To provide extraordinary musical experiences that inspire and advance our community, enriching the lives of people of all ages and backgrounds. Vision: To be Arizona’s leading cultural organization, recognized as an innovative leader in artistic excellence, engagement, and education. Brand Promise: Extraordinary musical experiences that create community and enrich the quality of life in Arizona.

Ruling year info


President & CEO

Mr. Peter Kjome

Main address

One North 1st Street Suite 200

Phoenix, AZ 85004 USA

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NTEE code info

Symphony Orchestras (A69)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

The Phoenix Symphony

The Phoenix Symphony is Arizona’s largest performing arts organization and one of the state’s most important cultural assets. In addition to performing traditional and modern repertoire in Symphony Hall and around the Valley, its world-class musicians are actively engaged in the community thanks to generous foundation, corporation, and individual support. The Symphony is strengthened by collaborating with renowned guest conductors and artists. The core mission of The Phoenix Symphony is to provide extraordinary musical experiences that inspire and advance our community, enriching the lives of people of all ages and backgrounds. Annually, orchestra members empower more than 125,000 people through community engagement and education programs and create opportunities for deeper connection for tens of thousands of adults experiencing homelessness, in Alzheimer’s care facilities, in hospitals and in hospice.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Mind Over Music - A STE[+a]M Initiative

Mind Over Music, is a three-year STE[+a]M (science, technology, engineering, arts, math) professional development model in partnership Phoenix Symphony musicians and K-5 teachers at Arizona State University Preparatory Academy. The Phoenix Symphony is the only orchestra in the country to implement a whole school instructional model based on STE[+a]M theory and practice. Phoenix Symphony musicians and teachers train and collaborate together to design and deliver new STE[+a]M curriculum units to K-5 classrooms that emphasis creative and analytical thinking through live and digital music. For students, a STE[+a]M unit provides an exploratory look to core subjects like science and math by tapping their artistic abilities. Each unit is measured quantitatively and longitudinally by an outside evaluator with pre and post testing with internal treatment and control groups for both students and teachers so that we can measure the efficacy of the program.
The initiative is considered a pioneer project for an American orchestra as it represents a ground up development of an entirely new curriculum that leverages music to teach STEM. The program meets the criteria of the Arizona STEM Network as a partial STEM immersion model and reinforces the Arizona Department of Education Common Core Standards in the design framework by:
1. Implementing and investigating the effectiveness of music integration as a way to facilitate guided and open inquiry in the field of informal science, math and language arts learning.
2. Strengthen the creativity and innovation skills of STE[+a]M teachers through hands-on experiential learning and music-based professional development.
3. Enhancing the innovation of cross-disciplinary STE[+a]M teams comprised of professional musicians and K-5 teachers.
4. Conducting a comprehensive program review that includes multiple measures, both quantitative and qualitative to gauge achievement of goals and curriculum implementation.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

The B-Sharp Music Wellness program targets a specific community outreach population through a multi-faceted music wellness experience dedicated to bringing the transformative, healing power of live music from Symphony Hall to their facilities. Symphony musicians provide an engaging program that ranges from soothing classical strings to Americana jazz. Concerts are performed at each facility once per month year-round. Each concert varies in length from 90 minutes to two hours, with musicians remaining afterward for one-on-one interaction with participants. Concert content is varied such as a brass quintet performing jazz standards; a string duo performing Mozart and an arrangement of Michael Jackson's Billie Jean; and a percussion quartet showcasing the evolution of rhythm and drumming.

We think of the program as having a 360° impact not just with the audience, but everyone who participates ─ Symphony musicians, partner agency staff and volunteers. B-Sharp instills a deep connection to music and creativity and sets the stage for a broad range of personal experiences within the seven elements of wellness: social/cultural, physical, environmental, occupational, intellectual, emotional and spiritual.

B-Sharp for Alzheimer’s (formerly “Arts Engagement Program”): Designed for individuals with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias and their care partners, participants attend Friday morning Coffee Concerts and receive an exclusive pre-concert chat about the day’s music with Symphony musicians.

Phoenix Symphony at Shea: In partnership with Scottsdale Healthcare Shea Medical Center, Symphony chamber musicians perform a varied and engaging program in public areas of Shea Hospital for patients, family members and hospital staff. The program repertoire uses music as a tool to help with the stress and anxiety of a medical diagnosis, thus embracing a holistic outlook for a patient to cope and heal.

B-Sharp Homeless Outreach: The primary program goal is to use music as a catalyst for joy and self-expression for individuals who often feel powerless and silenced. The Symphony partners with four nationally recognized homeless facilities serving women, men, unaccompanied minors and families ─ each group representing the growing population of individuals experiencing homelessness in Greater Phoenix.

B-Sharp for Special Populations: Everyone responds to the energy and joy of music, regardless of their capabilities or challenges. Symphony musicians bring the therapeutic effects of interacting with live music to facilities serving children and adults with cognitive, physical and/or developmental disabilities.

Population(s) Served

Symphony for the Schools provides daytime symphonic concert experiences for 25,000 K-12th grade students of Greater Phoenix and the surrounding metropolitan areas. As a cooperative effort with grade level teachers and music specialists in public, charter, private and home school systems, the program offers an increased understanding of and appreciation for symphonic music. Each school year, the Symphony schedules 12 concerts, 45 minutes in length which are programmed by our Director of Education & Community Outreach and conducted by the Symphony’s Resident Conductor. Performed live at Symphony Hall by the full orchestra, the programs have an entertaining mix of narration and popular classical music selections which are tied to core subjects such as science, math and language arts. The field trip to Symphony Hall for a Symphony for the Schools performance begins in the school classroom through the use of free study guides that contain lesson plans and assessment tools to help teachers prepare students for their pre- and post concert experiences.

Priority is given to schools located in an economically repressed or urban redevelopment area of the community, Title 1 designation and/or at least 50% of the student population qualifying for the federal free/reduced lunch program. Schools of this nature face numerous financial challenges in providing arts education opportunities for their students. As school districts continue to eliminate funding for music programs, Symphony programs are often the only music education experience K-12 students in Arizona encounter. For many students, Symphony for the Schools is their first exposure to orchestral music.

2013-2014 Programs
Good Vibrations (Grades K-8)
How is a brass instrument engineered to produce sound? What causes the strings on a cello to vibrate? Can a drum change pitch? The answers can be found in science. This concert will allow students to explore the world of music through the lens of science and mechanics of engineering.

Great Works of Literature in Music (Grades 7th-12th)
Classic literary works have long inspired composers to create beautiful music. This concert will feature staged readings of classical literature with corresponding musical compositions.

Music and Math (Grades K-8)
Counting, fractions, symmetry - must be math class, right? Guess again  it's music! In this fast-paced concert, students will discover connections between music and math by listening to music from well-known composers. Get ready for music as you've never heard it before . . . you may just come away whistling some math!

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Reaching beyond the walls of Symphony Hall, the Symphony’s Classroom Concert program brings the live concert experience into the school. Students hear live, top-quality music and meet professional musicians in an up-close, informal setting.

During this interactive 40 minute visit, Symphony musicians talk about music, history, music theory, the science of the sound produced by their instruments and their own individual journeys to becoming professional musicians. Concerts are performed in a variety of settings including gymnasiums, cafeteria, libraries and classrooms.

Each repertoire integrates music standards with science, language arts, math concepts; helping students make connections across the curriculum.

The Building Blocks of Music gives K-3 students a look at the strings instruments family as they learn the science behind how they produce sound and explore the world of the composers who write the music.

The Science of Sound for grades 4-8 shows students how science concepts such as vibration, frequency and resonance are relevant when playing classical orchestral instruments by reinforcing STE[+a]M (science, technology, engineering, arts, math) concepts. This concert is aligned with the National Science Standards and Benchmarks for science literacy.

Reach Out to Music blends the traditional audience/performer format with an interactive session in which students become part of a personalized learning experience with the premise that we all use music to tell and discover our own story.

To support classroom integration of all the Symphony’s education programs, free electronic teacher study guides are available through the Symphony website. Specific to each program’s repertoire, corresponding study guides contain lesson plans and assessment tools to help teachers prepare students for their pre- and post concert experiences. All presentations, curriculum guide, lesson plans and assessment tools are aligned with the Arizona Arts and Common Core Academic Standards.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

In 2000, The Phoenix Symphony established a partnership with the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community to provide a supplemental music program with private and group instrumental lessons to interested high school students. Now in its thirteenth year, the One Nation continues to enhance the general and instrumental music curriculum of the Salt River Community’s K-8 elementary and the high school by building relationships between Symphony musicians and students. The program has been tremendously successful in engaging students in music education, building self-esteem and increasing academic achievement.

One Nation is a music education residency program offered to students attending Salt River High Community Schools. The program is located on the Salt River Elementary and High School campuses and is a collaborative effort coordinated by the Salt River Community Schools Performing Arts Specialist/One Nation Coordinator and the Symphony’s Director of Education and Community Outreach. With the continued successes of One Nation, the Symphony has expanded the program in the 2013/2014 school year by adding four days of instruction per week at the elementary school campus in addition to the one day per week at the high school. Additionally the total program length has been expanded from 18 weeks to 32 weeks of program delivery.

The program offers private lessons, group lessons/workshops and recital coaching by Symphony musicians in a structured four day per week, in-school and afterschool environment for grades 9-12. In addition to instrumental music instruction, students prepare solos and ensemble work for community recitals. One Nation is directly tied to the Arizona Department of Education Music standards and the music curriculum of the Salt River Community schools with class assignments and lessons appropriately gauged to the student’s skill level. Scheduling for instrumental music instruction follows the school year calendar, beginning in September and ending in May. Recitals, Classroom Concerts and Bach ‘n Roll Assemblies are planned accordance with school schedules. All students enrolled in the Salt River Community Schools attend Symphony for the Schools concerts at Symphony Hall which are offered three times per year.

The teaching roster is composed of eight Symphony musicians and the One Nation program coordinator/teacher. Private lessons are offered by nine musicians teaching an average of 60 minutes per day for 32 weeks. Group lessons are offered through the afterschool program by four Symphony musicians with an average of 90 minutes per day of instruction. In addition, a Symphony musician assigned to the teaching roster serves as a Student Recital Coach to better prepare students for community concerts and auditions for the Arizona Regional Band/Orchestra and/or All-State High School Band and Orchestra.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Where we work

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    The people we serve tell us they find data collection burdensome



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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


Connect with nonprofit leaders


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Connect with nonprofit leaders


Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

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  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
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Board of directors
as of 11/15/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr. Adam Goodman

Goodmans Interior Structures

Term: 2023 -

David Bornemann

Bornemann Associates, LLC

Dr. Oliver J. Harper

U of A College of Medicine

John Graham

Sunbelt Holdings

Dr. Bernard Bendok

Mayo Clinic

Max Fose

Fose + McKay

Adam Goodman

Goodmans Interior Structures

Aidan McSheffrey

Salt River Project

Doris Ong

Community Leader

Paul Penzone

Sheriff - Maricopa Co.

Jeff Rich

Rose Law Group

David Selden

Messner Reeves LLP

Morris Stein

HKS Architects

Ken Vecchione

Western Alliance Bank

Ellen Andeen

Town of Paradise Valley

Eliot Minsker

Community Leader

Mark Young

National Bank of Arizona

Christopher Wolf

The Phoenix Symphony

Anna Kim Kazepides

The Phoenix Symphony

Tito Muñoz

The Phoenix Symphony

Laura Franco French

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company

Peter Kjome

The Phoenix Symphony

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    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? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/15/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

Transgender Identity

No data

Sexual orientation

No data


No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 11/15/2023

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.