St. Louis, MO – May 15, 2023 – The St. Louis Civic Orchestra is thrilled to announce the appointment of Dr. Barry Ford as its new Artistic Director. A highly esteemed conductor, musician, and music educator, he brings a wealth of experience and a deep passion for orchestral music to the renowned St. Louis Civic Orchestra.

With an impressive background in orchestral conducting, composition, trumpet performance, and a commitment to artistic excellence, he is poised to lead the St. Louis Civic Orchestra into an exciting new chapter. His knowledge of diverse musical styles, extensive experience performing and conducting in Brazil and at the Universities of Nebraska-Lincoln and the University of Missouri-Columbia, and his dedication to fostering collaboration among musicians make him an ideal fit for the orchestra and its commitment to enriching the cultural landscape of St. Louis. His extensive repertoire encompasses classical, contemporary, and symphonic works, reflecting his commitment to artistic excellence and innovation.

“The St. Louis Civic Orchestra has a rich tradition of artistic excellence and community involvement,” said Dr. Ford. “I am honored to join this esteemed organization and look forward to collaborating with the musicians, staff, and board members to create transformative musical experiences for the St. Louis community.”

The St. Louis Civic Orchestra is excited to present its first concert of the season under the baton of Dr. Barry Ford on October 28, 2023, at First Presbyterian Church in Kirkwood. The program will feature a captivating lineup, including Berlioz’s Rakoczy March from The Damnation of Faust, Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 1 in D major, Op. 19 performed by the orchestra’s talented concertmaster, Graham Woodland, and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 1 in G minor, “Winter Daydreams.”

Continuing their tradition of offering diverse and compelling performances, the orchestra’s second concert will take place on December 2, 2023, at Ritenour High School in Overland. Audiences will be treated to a memorable evening, showcasing Corelli’s Concerto Grosso in G minor, Ravel’s enchanting Pavane for a Dead Princess, Prokofiev’s charming Lieutenant Kijé Suite, and a delightful selection of holiday music.

The St. Louis Civic Orchestra will then captivate audiences on February 24, 2024, at Harris Stowe University in St. Louis City. This concert will include Samuel Barber’s evocative First Essay, Augusta Read Thomas’s mesmerizing piece Of Paradise and Light, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s Symphonic Variations on an African Air, and the Symphony No. 1, Afro-American” by the trailblazing William Grant Still.

To conclude Dr. Ford’s inaugural conducting season, the orchestra will present their final concert on April 27, 2024, at First Presbyterian Church in Kirkwood. The program promises a grand finale with Mendelssohn’s Overture to the Hebrides, exceptional concerti performed by the winners of the prestigious Florence Frager Young Artist Competition, and the powerfully majestic Symphony No. 3 “Organ Symphony” by Camille Saint-Saëns.

The St. Louis Civic Orchestra eagerly anticipates the start of their new season under the leadership of Dr. Barry Ford. With his immense talent and artistic vision, Dr. Ford is poised to lead the orchestra to new heights, creating unforgettable musical experiences for the St. Louis community.

For more information about the St. Louis Civic Orchestra, including performances in the 2023-2024 season, please visit

Concert #1:  Saturday, October 28, 2023 7:00pm (First Presbyterian in Kirkwood)

  • Berlioz – Rakoczy March from The Damnation of Faust
  • Prokofiev – Violin Concerto No. 1 (Graham Woodland, solo)
  • Tchaikovsky – Symphony No. 1 “Winter Daydream”

Concert #2: Saturday, December 2, 2023 7:00pm (Ritenour High School)

  • Corelli – Concerto Grosso in G min (#6)
  • Ravel – Pavane for a Dead Princess
  • Prokofiev – Lieutenant Kijé Suite
  • Mozart – Sleigh Ride
  • Christmas and Holiday Favorites

Concert #3: Saturday, February 24, 2024 7:00pm (Harris Stowe University)

  • Samuel Barber – First Essay
  • Augusta Read Thomas – Of Paradise and Light
  • Samuel Coleridge-Taylor – Symphonic Variations on an African Air
  • William Grant Still – Symphony No. 1 “Afro-American Symphony”

Concert #4: Saturday, April 27, 2024 7:00pm (First Presbyterian in Kirkwood)

  • Mendelssohn – Overture to the Hebrides (Fingal’s Cave)
  • Concerto(s) by Florence Frager Young Artist Competition Winner(s)
  • Saint- Saëns – Symphony No. 3 (“Organ Symphony”) 

About St. Louis Civic Orchestra:

The St. Louis Civic Orchestra is a premier community orchestra dedicated to enriching the cultural landscape of St. Louis through the power of symphonic music. Comprising talented musicians from various walks of life, the orchestra collaborates with well-known conductors and soloists, offering outstanding performances that inspire and engage audiences of all ages. The St. Louis Civic Orchestra is committed to promoting musical education, fostering artistic growth, and providing an inclusive platform for musicians to share their passion and talent with the community.