The orchestra is a community orchestra composed of approximately forty non-professional musicians who perform classical chamber music for the public free of charge in the Jackson metropolitan area. We perform at least three concerts during each season.
The orchestra began in 1984 when Gary Robinson, a graduate student in music education at Mississippi College, invited local musicians, most of whom are non-professionals, to join him in forming a community orchestra as part of a school project.
Through the generosity of such benefactors as the Gertrude Ford Foundation, Stuart C. Irby, Jr., Muller Addkison, Jr., State Farm Insurance Company, Dr. and Mrs. Charles Jackson, Dr. and Mrs. Michael LeBlanc, and many other contributors, we have had the good fortune of continuing to present excellent programs. Its programs have become a valued cultural asset to the metropolitan area.
We have an excellent and well-qualified conductor. Wayne Linehan is a professional musician who plays with the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra and is an adjunct music professor at Millsaps College and Mississippi College. Bob McNally, for many years concertmaster of the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra, is a highly respected violinist throughout the country.
Our non-professional musicians freely give hours to practice and performances. A few selected students, such as those under the supervision of Dr. Perry Combs at Hinds Junior College, are given opportunities to develop their talents in an orchestra setting.
Our concerts have been performed in past years in the historical setting of the Old Capitol State Historical Museum. Because renovations caused by Katrina are underway, St. Andrew's Episcopal Cathedral graciously allowed us to perform in their beautiful sanctuary.
Those organizations or persons who underwrite an entire season, or one performance, or more, are invited to submit a logo or promotional text for inclusion in the program. All contributors, however, are recognized by listing their names in the appropriate category as set by the board.
The orchestra operates under a Mississippi non-profit charter registered in Mississippi as the Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra Society, Inc. It has an exempt status under section 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code as an organization described in Section 501(c)(3). Contributions are fully deductible.