The mission of the Palm Beach Symphony Society is to engage, educate and entertain the greater community of the Palm Beaches through live performances of inspiring orchestral music.
Palm Beach Symphony was founded in 1974 to address the need for a professional orchestra in Palm Beach County. In its earliest years, the orchestra performed only a few concerts a year with a part-time conductor and a volunteer staff. It was not until Mrs. Ethel S. Stone became the Symphony’s board chair, a position she held for 23 years, that the orchestra began establishing itself as a cultural force in the community.
A visionary leader, Mrs. Stone inherited her love of music from her family and generously shared it with the community she loved. During her tenure, a number of well-known musical figures served in leadership roles, including Karl Karapetian, John Iuele, Kenneth Schermerhorn, Stewart Kershaw, David Gray, Ulf Bjorlin, and John Covelli.
When Mrs. Stone died on August 6, 1996, John and Joan Tighe stepped in to continue her legacy. They established a stable board of directors, a dedicated administrative staff, and a small endowment fund to ensure the Symphony’s continued growth. Musicians who led the orchestra during the Tighes’ tenure were Alan Kogosowski, Vladimir Ponkin, Sergiu Schwartz, Ray Robinson and Donald Oglesby.
Today, under the leadership of David McClymont, Palm Beach Symphony has grown into a world-class orchestra with an expanded mission that includes carefully crafted education and community outreach programs that bring live classical music programs and concerts into schools, community centers, and public venues in and around the Palm Beaches. McClymont oversees a robust season of masterworks and chamber music concerts, produced under the artistic and music direction of internationally renowned conductor, Maestro Ramón Tebar.
The Palm Beach Symphony performs in modern venues, such as The Kravis Center and Benjamin Hall, and historically important landmarks, including the Henry Morrison Flagler Museum, The Breakers Palm Beach, The Mar-a-Lago Club, the Church of Bethesda-by-the-Sea , and The Society of the Four Arts.