Thayer Symphony Orchestra Today
“Thayer Symphony Orchestra is quite simply one of the finest ensembles of its kind, strictly first rate. Whether playing symphonic or opera repertoire, they are really skilled and play in an uplifting manner. Toshimasa Francis Wada deserves great credit for this marvelous orchestra.”
Ron Della Chiesa, Host , WGBH Radio
Now entering its 38th Season, Thayer Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1974 in South Lancaster by Dr. Jon Robertson as the Thayer Conservatory Orchestra. From its inception as a community orchestra providing professional, community volunteer and student musicians the opportunity to perform to its current role as one of the last full season orchestras in New England, the TSO has maintained its core mission to "sustain and develop a symphony orchestra of the highest quality for the education, enrichment and pleasure of the citizens and musicians of Central Massachusetts.”
In 1983, Maestro Toshimasa Francis Wada was invited to become Music Director and Conductor. As a result of his talented leadership every aspect of the organization has grown and prospered; and under his baton, TSO has received wide critical acclaim. As a direct result of our phenomenal growth, in 2000 TSO's performance venue was moved to the state-of-the-art Stratos Dukakis Performing Arts Center at Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical School in Fitchburg. At the same time, TSO's administrative offices relocated from South Lancaster to a first class suite of offices and classrooms located in the Woodblock building in downtown Leominster.
Our dynamic performing arts institution is an independent, non-profit cultural organization that does not receive major support from any one source. TSO is a non-profit governed by a volunteer Board of Directors representing the very best our many communities have to offer. The TSO and its music education component, the Community Music School, is fast becoming the regions most comprehensive music organization. The many interests who make up the TSO and CMS include the Friends of TSO, who augment our fund-raising activities and assist our professional staff.
Thayer Symphony Orchestra continues to be in demand for special event performances. Over the years, TSO has performed concerts celebrating the opening of the National Plastics Center and Museum, the restoration of Clinton's Town Hall, benefits for the St. Vincent's Hospital Guild, annual performances to benefit Our Father's House in Fitchburg, and appearances at Boston's Symphony Hall and Worcester's Mechanics Hall with renowned soprano Aprile Millo to benefit St. Bernards Central Catholic High School. Most recently TSO has performed for such corporations as Hanover Insurance Group featuring soprano Maria Ferrante and Ida Zecco and for civic events at Devens, MA. TSO as well as small ensembles from TSO are available for hire in the entire New England States.
Thayer Symphony Orchestra has been recognized by the Massachusetts Cultural Council as a leader in enriching the cultural life of the Commonwealth. TSO was one of only twenty-nine organizations awarded this special recognition and is one of only eight to receive this distinction two years in a row. In 2005 Maestro Wada received the Visions Award for outstanding leadership in the cultural community of Central Massachusetts presented by the Telegram and Gazette.
Thayer Symphony Orchestra has proudly provided cultural enrichment to this region for 38 years. As we celebrate our thirty-eighth season, our commitment to enhancing the quality of life in the communities we serve only grows stronger.
TSO welcomes new summer home to perform at the Brooks Pond Summer Concert Series in Leominster, Massachusetts.