(St. Louis, February 14, 2018)
– The National Endowment for the Arts has awarded the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra a $45,000 Art Works grant. The grant supports performances of new music during the SLSO’s 2017/2018 season, which celebrates the orchestra’s 50th anniversary at Powell Hall.

Recognized world-wide for its artistic excellence, the SLSO has a great tradition of showcasing new music throughout its 138-year history. The SLSO’s current season features six works new to the Orchestra’s repertoire, including Thomas Adès Powder Her Face Suite (St. Louis Premiere with additional movements co-commissioned by the SLSO), Peter Ruzicka’s Elegie: Remembrance for Orchestra (U.S. Premiere), Guillaume Connesson's Flammenschrift (St. Louis Premiere), and Jörg Widmann's Violin Concerto (St. Louis Premiere). The other new work is Erkki-Sven Tüür’s Soslastalgia for piccolo and orchestra (U.S. Premeire), a co-commission by the SLSO with the London Philharmonic and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchstra. Solastalgia had its world premiere in Amsterdam on December 6, 2017 with the SLSO’s next Music Director Stéphane Denève on the podium. Additionally, Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra will bring Swing Symphony to Powell Hall for the season finale.

The NEA has approved more than $25 million in grants as part of its first major funding announcement for fiscal year 2018. The Art Works category is the NEA’s largest funding category and supports projects that focus on the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement, diversity and inclusion, and lifelong learning in the arts.

NEA Chairman Jane Chu Said: “It is energizing to see the impact that the arts are making throughout the United States. These NEA-supported projects, such as the new music at the SLSO, are good examples of how the arts build stronger and more vibrant communities, improve well-being, prepare our children to succeed, and increase the quality of our lives.”

SLSO President & CEO Marie-Hélène Bernard: “The National Endowment for the Arts’ support is a wonderful testament to the SLSO’s continuing commitment to the music of our time, and is especially meaningful as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the orchestra’s beloved home, Powell Hall. From last month’s U.S. premiere of Peter Ruzicka’s Eligie: Remembrance for Orchestra to our classical season finale featuring Wynton Marsalis’ Swing Symphony, artistic visionaries, like Music Director David Robertson and the musicians of the SLSO, have helped Powell Hall has become for musicians and audiences alike a monument to musical exploration and innovation.”

For more information on Powell Hall’s 50thanniversary visit

For more information on projects included in the NEA grant announcement visit


St. Louis Symphony Orchestra

Celebrated as one of the today’s most exciting and enduring orchestras, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra is the second-oldest orchestra in the country and widely considered one of the world’s finest. Now in its 138th season, the orchestra is committed to artistic excellence, educational impact, and community connection – all in service to its mission of enriching people’s lives through the power of music.

In addition to its regular concert performances at Powell Hall, which marks its 50th anniversary as home of the SLSO this season, the orchestra is an integral part of the diverse and vibrant St. Louis community, presenting hundreds of free education programs and performances throughout the region each year. The Grammy Award–winning SLSO’s impact beyond the St. Louis region is realized through weekly Saturday night concert broadcasts on St. Louis Public Radio, celebrated recordings, and regular touring activity.

American conductor David Robertson is the 12th music director in the orchestra’s history and has solidified the SLSO’s standing as one of the nation’s most vital and innovative ensembles. The current SLSO season honors the legacy of Music Director David Robertson, whose remarkable 13-year tenure will conclude at the close of the season in May.

Today, the SLSO builds on the institution’s current momentum on all fronts, including artistic, financial, audience growth, and community impact, and looks toward the future with Stéphane Denève. Denève, who has been a frequent guest conductor with the orchestra since 2003, begins his tenure as Music Director with the 19/20 season, following next season as Music Director Designate.