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Mission Statement

The orchestra's mission is threefold:

  • To deepen appreciation for classical music among the widest possible audience through performances and recordings of the highest artistic merit and music and education programs for all ages;
  • To showcase wonderful yet little-known music from all periods;
  • To provide ongoing opportunities for emerging composers and soloists of exceptional promise.


Now in its 30th season, Riverside Symphony is widely credited for bringing a unique musical perspective to classical music audiences in New York City. Its vibrant performances of innovative programs are routinely lauded by The New York Times, and its six CDs have been acclaimed in both the U.S. and the international press.

Founded in 1981 by conductor and music director George Rothman and artistic director and composer-in-residence Anthony Korf, Riverside Symphony has introduced New York audiences to important works by an array of contemporary composers from around the world, unfamiliar works by great masters and extraordinary young soloists.

The Symphony gives three concerts each season at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center. These concerts are preceded by the popular Riverside Symphony Salons in which composers and musicians discuss the upcoming works.

Music Memory, our widely valued educational program launched in 1999, now serves nearly 8,000 third- through sixth-grade New York City public school children throughout the five boroughs. It integrates an innovative classroom learning program with a year-end Citywide Finals Competition. The program has been cited by leading arts educators and is endorsed by the New York City Department of Education's Director of Music.

Its milestone accomplishments include:

  • Numerous premieres of major orchestral works by today's most important composers and six Riverside Symphony commissions;
  • Performances of rarely heard orchestral compositions by such masters as Haydn, Prokofiev and Ravel;
  • The presentation of more than 50 world-class young soloists, many in their New York orchestral debut;
  • Six internationally acclaimed CDs of contemporary orchestral works, one a 2000 Grammy Award nominee;
  • The Riverside Symphony International Composer Reading Project, a forum for composers worldwide, with a special competition for American composers.

Riverside Symphony is supported by the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, major foundations, corporations and private individuals.



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