On behalf of the board of directors, Dr. Oliver Harper, chair of the Phoenix Symphony Association, announces Virginia G. Piper Music Director Tito Muñoz and President and CEO Jim Ward have both agreed to separate multi-year contract extensions.
“It is an honor for the board of directors and for this community that our talented leadership duo at The Phoenix Symphony have recommitted to this incredible organization and the continued development of our cultural economy,” said Harper. “Tenures among leaders at cultural institutions are often short with high turnover which can be detrimental to the organization and the community. We are lucky to have these strong leaders commit to the Symphony and our community, offering stability and leadership well into the next decade.”
President and CEO Jim Ward came on board in 2010 originally as a volunteer consultant, then interim CEO, and for the past 7 years as the President and CEO of The Phoenix Symphony. Jim faced an organization on the brink of bankruptcy but quickly stabilized the organization, kicked off a Music Director search and refocused the Symphony’s community impact with groundbreaking programs like Mind Over MusicTM and B-Sharp Alzheimer’s research, A W.O.N.D.E.R. Project. Mr. Ward has also successfully negotiated a multi-year contract with the Symphony musicians and continues to lead the organization to record attendance and record ticket sales.
“As our 70th Anniversary tagline says, ‘We are just getting warmed up,’” reflects Ward. “We have a vision for a Symphony reimagined that delivers a premiere arts organization that is a reason people want to live, work and raise a family in the Greater Phoenix area. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve this community and orchestra, and I am incredibly proud of all the musicians, the staff, the board and our volunteers have done for this organization. We have accomplished a lot but we are not done yet and have a lot to do to fulfill our mission.”
Tito Muñoz is currently finishing his fourth season as the 11th Virginia G. Piper Music Director. After a lengthy and global search, Maestro Muñoz joined The Phoenix Symphony in the 2013/14 season and quickly established a vision focused on artistic excellence and ensuring that Phoenix was a place that new music, especially young American composers, could be celebrated and performed. Under Muñoz, Classical audiences have been at record levels and continue to draw new and younger patrons to experience live orchestral music. The 2018/19 Season was just announced and continues Muñoz’s passion for celebrated masterworks, a diverse presentation of composers as well as integrating multimedia into the Classical repertoire.
“The community here in Phoenix has been incredibly welcoming and vibrant and I am excited to continue to lead this amazing orchestra for many years to come,” said Muñoz. “I am incredibly proud of the talented and professional musicians I work with each week here with The Phoenix Symphony. As I look to the future, I look to grow artistically with the orchestra and our community and to continue to perform celebrated orchestral masterworks as well as music of our time, as we showcase upcoming works by young American composers.”
For more information about The Phoenix Symphony’s 2018/19 Season visit HERE