Genre: Orchestra

Country of Origin: Singapore

The mission of the Juneau Symphony is to give local musicians a platform to perform and develop musically, to provide live, high quality symphonic music for the community, and to offer musical opportunities and support for youth.

Founded in 1962 by music teacher Cliff Berge, the Juneau Symphony began as a community orchestra with a volunteer conductor and players. In 40 seasons of bringing live orchestral music to Alaska’s capital city, the Juneau Symphony now boasts over 80 semi-professional and volunteer musicians, many of whom hold advanced degrees in music performance. Most live in Juneau or Southeast Alaska with a few additional players brought in to assist as required.

Berge and other volunteers conducted the Symphony for its first 20 years by which time the Symphony had grown to require a professional conductor. Mel Flood was hired and he led the Symphony for the next 17 years. Flood stepped down in 1999, and after a lengthy search, Kyle Wiley Pickett was chosen to lead the Symphony into the future.

Under the direction of conductor Kyle Wiley Pickett, the Juneau Symphony has grown musically, producing higher quality performances of a wide variety of repertoire from concert standards by Bach, Beethoven and Brahms, to newer works of Hindemith, Holst and Mahler. Pickett formed the Juneau Symphony Chorus, instituted a series of summer Pops Concerts that have featured dance, movie, show tunes and light classics, and staged a Halloween-theme concert aimed at the entire family.

Principal players with the Symphony have been showcased in concertos for flute, violin, cello, trombone and horn, and local winners of the Youth Concerto Competition have premiered as student soloists. Guest soloists, including Juneau virtuosos Paul and Linda Rosenthal, have performed concertos by Bruch, Rachmaninoff, Tchaikovsky; the Brahms Double and Beethoven Triple concertos and even newer works like concertos for euphonium, djembe and maracas. Kyle's Concert Conversations regularly attract scores of music lovers to learn more about the concert selections be they The Pines of Rome or Pictures at an Exhibition.