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Press Release


Jean Oelrich
Director of Communications
(714) 876-2380

Pacific Symphony Awarded $35,000 Economic Development Grant From Bank Of America For Its Artistic And Community Initiatives

Orange County, CA — October 18, 2018

Pacific Symphony and the Bank of America Charitable Foundation today announced a new $35,000 grant to continue musical support of the Orange County community. The announcement was made at the Symphony’s administrative home at the Charlie and Ling Zhang Center for Musical Arts and Education in Irvine, California.

Through nationally recognized K-12 in-school music education programming, violin instruction for Title I students and a summer arts camp, arts-X-press, the Symphony reaches tens of thousands of young people each year. Community engagement includes free concerts in public parks, community centers and local festivals, as well as radio broadcasts, and specialized services through the Heartstrings programs, which target disadvantaged residents. Heartstrings partners with 23 local agencies providing free tickets and bus transportation to concerts, on-site musical activities, music therapy and interactive engagement.

“Through Bank of America’s long-standing commitment to arts education, their grant support to the Symphony allows us to expand our community engagement services to more community members in the Southern California area,” said Pacific Symphony’s President and CEO, John Forsyte. “The Symphony will continue to provide local schools and community nonprofits with music learning, enrichment and music therapy to offset the steady decline of the availability of the arts to residents. We’re proud to continue investing in the artistic prosperity and future of Orange County.”

“Bank of America recognizes and appreciates the importance of artistic investment in the community, which allows for transformative musical experiences for people of all ages." said the Symphony’s Vice President of Education & Community Engagement, Susan Miller Kotses. “As the leader of our education and community engagement programs, I am profoundly grateful for Bank of America’s continuing commitment to providing access to those who might otherwise not have the opportunity to engage with Pacific Symphony and our world-class musicians. Quite simply, music has the power to change lives, and thanks to Bank of America, access to this life-changing opportunity is more widely available than ever before.”

Bank of America has worked with Pacific Symphony since 2000 to help fund its artistic engagement programs. The $35,000 grant is part of the company’s focus on directly supporting the Symphony’s current operations while increasing community impact and engagement to local residents. The funds from this grant will benefit 32 K-12 schools, 23 non-profit partners, and 272,000 Orange County residents and visitors who attend and participate in concerts and education and community programs.

“Bank of America recognizes that the arts matter as an important economic driver that helps spur community engagement, cultural exchange and local revenue,” said Allen Staff, Orange County market president, Bank of America. “The Pacific Symphony’s array of popular and important educational and outreach programs help make the arts accessible to classrooms and households that may not otherwise leverage the performing arts and its world class musicians for entertainment and, for school kids, possible careers.”


About Bank of America Corporate Philanthropy: Building on a long-standing tradition of investing in the communities it serves, Bank of America is delivering on a 10-year goal to donate $2 billion to nonprofit organizations engaged in improving the health and vitality of their neighborhoods. Funded by Bank of America, the Bank of America Charitable Foundation gave more than $200 million in 2010, making the bank one of the largest corporate cash donors in the United States. As a global company doing business in more than 150 countries, Bank of America approaches investing through a national strategy under which it works with local leaders to identify and meet the most pressing needs of individual communities. Reaffirming a commitment to develop and sustain a culture of service, bank associate volunteers contributed more than one million hours in 2010 to enhance the quality of life in their communities worldwide. For more information about Bank of America Corporate Philanthropy, please visit


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