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Rockford Orchestra Announces Finalists For New Music Director

Steve Larsen

The Rockford Symphony Orchestra is a bit closer to hiring its next music director. Steven Larsen worked as the RSO’s music director for 30 years, but this December he will pass the conductor’s baton.   

More than two hundred candidates applied for this role, according to an orchestra press release. This morning nine finalists were announced.

The next phase in the selection process will require each finalist to spend one week in Rockford starting in January 2022. Candidates will conduct and program a concert with the orchestra.  

Larsen originally planned to retire during the 2020-21 season, but the pandemic put that on hold. He’ll conduct a few more concerts this year before his departure, including Holiday Pops.

The RSO started a Larsen Legacy Campaign to help with the financial future of the orchestra. The goal is to raise $500,000 by June 30. So far, the orchestra has raised more than half of these funds.

  • Yvonne Boose is a current corps member for Report for America, an initiative of the GroundTruth Project. It's a national service program that places talented journalists in local newsrooms like WNIJ. You can learn more about Report for America at wnij.org.

Yvonne covers artistic, cultural, and spiritual expressions in the COVID-19 era. This could include how members of community cultural groups are finding creative and innovative ways to enrich their personal lives through these expressions individually and within the context of their larger communities. Boose is a recent graduate of the Illinois Media School and returns to journalism after a career in the corporate world.