The Knox-Galesburg Symphony has been bringing award-winning live classical music to the region for 72 years. An endowment match from Galesburg Community Foundation will help support the nonprofit as it expands its reach to more people through music performance and education for years to come.
Galesburg Community Foundation is offering a 3:1 match grant to build the symphony’s endowment. For every $3 donated before June 30, 2024, the Community Foundation will donate $1, giving the symphony an opportunity to raise a total of $400,000.
The symphony endowment is a permanent fund where the principal is invested and grows forever, creating a permanent source of financial support for the symphony.
“More expansion, more programming, more connection to the community—that’s the power of endowment,” says Lucas Wood, Knox-Galesburg Symphony Executive Director. “It provides financial security and a backbone for growth.”
That growth can be seen at 95 North Seminary Street, the new home of Symphony Center. The newly renovated space includes four private teaching studios, a large group rehearsal space, a classroom, and a large flex space that can be used for group rehearsals, events, and recitals. The building also includes the symphony’s administrative offices and additional space for future expansion. “We’ve created a space where people can come and feel empowered through music—a space where they feel special.”
The new space offers opportunities for classical music instruction that hasn’t always been readily available locally. “We want to broaden our connection to the community and fulfill our mission to promote live classical music by creating accessible educational opportunities available to all. By building these programs, we will not only inspire the next generation of musicians, but we will be educating future audiences and Symphony members,” says Wood. Currently, many symphony musicians come from outside the region, some from as far away as Chicago, St. Louis, Des Moines, and Cincinnati.
In addition to a new space, the symphony season has also received a major overhaul. Instead of five or six large performances, the 2023-24 season features 14 performances that will include a chamber series, school performances, a summer music festival, and three orchestra performances at the Orpheum Theatre. “This re-imagination allows us to have a broader reach into the community through performance,” says Wood.
“Instead of continuing to do things the way they’ve always been done, the Knox-Galesburg Symphony is reinventing itself to better meet the needs of the community in a different way that is really exciting,” says Joshua Gibb, President & CEO of Galesburg Community Foundation.
The symphony’s vision is Learn. Perform. Inspire. “Building our endowment will help us fulfill that vision,” says Wood.