Orchestra History

ECSO
289 State St., New London, CT 06320
Office phone: 860-443-2876

In 1946, Victor Norman founded the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra, which he conducted and guided for the next 35 years. George Baziotopoulos led the ECSO from 1981 to 1986. During the 1986-1987 season, we conducted a search for the next music director. Paul C. Phillips was selected from a field of over 220 applicants and five guest conductors. He was the music director for 11 seasons until his resignation at the end of the 1998 season. Subsequently, a nine person search committee was formed and from over 250 submitted resumes selected four candidates as the permanent position of ECSO Music Director. Xiao-Lu Li was chosen and was announced as the new music director at a free community concert on May 26, 1999. After nine years, Xiao-Lu Li departed with fanfare and a great grand finale concert in May 2008. The 2008-2009 Season was a search season, during which six finalists for the position of ECSO Music Director performed. Toshiyuki Shimada was chosen to be our new music director in May 2009. 

A total of 45% of the ECSO income is earned and 55% is derived from fundraising events, grants, corporate sponsorships and hundreds of individual contributions. The percentages are in line with national averages for arts organizations. 

The Eastern Connecticut Symphony organization serves the community, reaching children of pre-school age through senior citizens enjoying their golden years. Our music-in-the-schools programs are presented throughout the elementary schools, kindergarten through middle school, in New London, Groton and Norwich. 

Mission Statement 

The mission of the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra is to inspire, educate, and connect our communities through live orchestral music.

Concerts Annually from September to April, the 75-plus member professional Symphony Orchestra presents six subscription concerts, many of which feature guest soloists. All subscription concerts are performed at the historic Garde Arts Center on State Street in New London. Free lectures, sponsored by the Friends of the Symphony, precede the classic concerts. The Orchestra is also contracted for additional concerts, such as concerts at The Mohegan Sun in the Grand Arena and performances with the Eastern Connecticut Ballet in presentations of "The Nutcracker."

Support the ECSO

Single Tickets On Sale!

Single tickets for the 2019-2020 season are now on sale! Satisfy  your musical curiosity, celebrate  this special occasion - a decade in the making, and honor Toshi's 10th season with the ECSO by hearing our orchestra with so many amazing artists.


Contact Us:

Eastern Connecticut 
Symphony Orchestra
289 State Street
New London, CT 06320

Phone: 860-443-2876

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Radio

Tchaikovsky: Manfred Symphony in B minor, Op. 58
Berlioz: Symphonie fantastique, Op. 14
Britten: Peter Grimes: Sea Interludes (4), Op. 33a
Vaughan Williams: Symphony no 1 "A sea symphony"
Mahler: Symphony no 2 in C minor "Resurrection"
Tchaikovsky: Symphony no 6 in B minor, Op. 74 "Pathétique"
Wagner: Tristan und Isolde: Prelude and Liebestod
Verdi: I lombardi
Shostakovich: Symphony no 5 in D minor, Op. 47
Nielsen: Symphony no 4, Op. 29 "Inextinguishable"
Elgar: Concerto for Cello in E minor, Op. 85
Beethoven: Symphony no 2 in D major, Op. 36
Snider: Disquiet
Vaughan Williams: Serenade to Music
Stravinsky: Symphony of Psalms
Strauss: Don Juan, Op. 20
Wagner: Prelude to Act III of Lohengrin
Smetana: The Moldau
Prokofiev: Symphony no 5 in B flat major, Op. 100
Liszt: Les préludes, S 97
Sibelius: Symphony no 2 in D major, Op. 43
Elgar: Nimrod from Enigma Variations
Strauss: Four Last Songs
Strauss: Ein Heldenleben, Op. 40
Berlioz: Le carnaval romain Overture, Op. 9
Wagner: Die Meistersinger, prelude
Elgar: Coronation Ode, Op. 44
Holst: The Planets, Op. 32/H 125
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade, Op. 35
Wagner: Overture to Tannhäuser
Novacek: Intoxication
Mussorgsky: The Great Gate of Kiev
Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue
Coolidge: Pioneer Dances
Copland: Suite from Our Town
Ravel: Rapsodie espagnole
Lowden: Armed Forces Salute
Kern: Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
Strauss: Tod und Verklärung, Op. 24 "Death and Transfiguration"
Tchaikovsky: Hamlet Overture, Op. 67
Dvorak: Symphony no 7 in D minor, Op. 70/B 141
Rachmaninov: Symphonic Dances, Op. 45
Mozart: Mass in C major, K 317 "Coronation"
Dvorak: Symphony no 9 in E minor, Op. 95/B 178 "From the New World"

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Additional Support

The ECSO operates with additional support from the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts which also receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.