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What We Believe
San Juan Symphony believes in the transformative power of music. As a regional symphony, we deliver an exceptional musical experience that not only captivates audiences but also fosters a profound sense of connection and belonging within our community.
Our talented musicians, renowned conductor, and acclaimed soloists come together to create unforgettable performances that showcase the highest standards of musical artistry. With meticulous attention to detail and a passion for excellence, we bring you symphonic masterpieces that stir the soul and transport you to a world of sublime musical beauty.
But our mission extends beyond the concert hall. We believe in the power of music to unite people and build bridges within our community. Through youth programs, educational initiatives, and collaborations with local organizations, we actively engage with individuals of all ages and backgrounds, nurturing a deep appreciation for music and its ability to inspire, heal, and empower.
At San Juan Symphony, we understand the profound impact that music can have on our lives. We seek to create meaningful connections between musicians, audiences, and the wider community. Whether you are a seasoned concert-goer, a music enthusiast, or someone who simply wants to explore the transformative power of symphonic music, we invite you to join us on this extraordinary journey of artistic expression and human connection.
Creating community through music.
The San Juan Symphony is an innovative regional orchestra that contributes to the cultural and educational enrichment of the diverse communities of the Four Corners area with inspiring live performances and creative collaborative efforts.
To be the heart of cultural enrichment, uniting our diverse community through the power of exceptional symphonic performances.
In the early 1970’s, musicians in Farmington, New Mexico and Durango, Colorado performed in two separate orchestras. In 1985, the two groups combined as the San Juan Symphony, governed by a Board of Directors with members from Farmington and Durango. Today, the San Juan Symphony serves as the finest regional professional orchestra in the Four Corners area.
The San Juan Symphony presents subscription concerts at Henderson Fine Arts Center at San Juan College in Farmington, NM, at the Community Concert Hall at Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO, and has performed at the Bayfield Performing Arts Center in Bayfield, CO, the Michael D. Palm Theater in Telluride, CO, and Montezuma-Cortez High School in Cortez, CO.
The San Juan Symphony is a member of the League of American Orchestras. After a national search in 2015, Dr. Thomas Heuser was appointed the fifth Music Director of the San Juan Symphony, succeeding Music Director Laureate Arthur Post. Dr. Heuser also serves as Music Director of the Idaho Falls Symphony, a regional professional orchestra in Southeast Idaho.
Under the leadership of Maestro Heuser, the Symphony has achieved tremendous growth. Audiences continue to grow in size and enthusiasm, while new and returning sponsors continue to show increasing support. During the Covid-19 global pandemic, the San Juan Symphony produced a virtual season, recording socially-distanced ensembles for a live broadcast series that reached into peoples’ homes around the country. The demand for the Symphony continues to intensify, with audiences vying to save their seats for increasingly sold-out events.
Education programs are central to the Symphony’s community enrichment and outreach efforts. The San Juan Symphony supports the SJS Youth Orchestra and Junior Orchestra ensembles, which provide intermediate to advanced orchestral training and an invaluable full orchestra experience for young musicians in the Four Corners. The SJSYO remains a credited ensemble opportunity for Fort Lewis College students, and the Junior Orchestra now offers a satellite group in Farmington. Masterclasses, Family Concerts, Side-by-Side Concerts, and Lectures by the Music Director are all part of the Symphony’s extensive educational programming.
As of July 1st, 2023, the San Juan Symphony officially absorbed 3rd Ave Arts, another local classical music presenter in the Durango community. The merger of 3rd Ave and the Symphony was hailed by the arts community as an important showing of mutual respect and partnership. The Symphony now proudly presents the “Beyond the Concert Hall” series, which includes programs previously produced by 3rd Ave Arts at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Durango. Those programs include the Durango Chamber Singers, the Durango Bach Festival, the Durango Chamber Music Festival and Academy, and many others.