Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra

Great Music, Talented Musicians


Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra

World War II was moving towards its end in August 1944. In spite of the fact that the war had a devastating effect on everything, the performing arts not excluded, George M. Ross, a certified public accountant in Seattle managed to find pleasure in practicing music.

Being a talented violinist Ross and his friends musicians gathered to play the classics. Studying music for hours was their favorite pleasure. Their practicing became very successful and the musicians decided to create an organization.

This way the Seattle Philharmonic and Choral Society had its starting point. The mission of the group was to support a civic orchestra of great musicians who have careers in other professional fields, and to create a premiere venue for soloists who have musical careers.

In its history counting over 62 years, there have been 4 music directors at the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra. It is a prosperous orchestra. The premier concert took place at Moore Theatre in March 1945. The chorus was composed of over 100 voices that joined the orchestra. Seattle Orchestra was introduced to an assembly of unpaid citizens devoted to education and musical expression.

The Don Bushel Competition, that is an annual concert, has served as a way to introduce talented musicians; the winner of this event gets a chance of solo appearance with Seattle Philharmonic, and is granted financially to support the development of a musical career.

Unfortunately, the choral society disbanded in 1964, due to reducing participation, however the successful and popular Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra went on prospering. The 60th anniversary of SPO was celebrated during the season in 2003.

It’s been over six decades since the foundation of the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra and it thrives as a united assembly of non-professional and professional musicians giving affordable performances of timeless classical music to the members of the community and other people fond of music. Nowadays like it was before the Seattle Orchestra is composed of people from various spheres of life like teachers, physicians, homemakers and accountants – to put it simply, people who are passionate about music.