Winners of The American Prize in Orchestral Performance 2018, college division, The Davidson College Symphony Orchestra (DCSO) is an ensemble for students of all backgrounds to rehearse and perform in a collaborative atmosphere while honing their technical skills and broadening their musical knowledge and experience.

Approximately 95% of the ensemble is composed of non-music majors, with no special priority given to music majors. This diverse body of students enhances their artistry in conjunction with their various perspectives and academic interests, creating an engaging and artistically stimulating rehearsal atmosphere.

As an auditioned ensemble averaging 60 student musicians, the DCSO performs a diverse range of orchestral repertoire from the Baroque through the present, featuring works by living composers each season. The orchestra rehearses twice weekly (Mondays and Wednesdays from 4:30-6:15 p.m.) and performs two to three full concerts per semester.

Throughout the season, the ensemble features winners of our annual concerto competition, highlights guest artists (such as Grammy Award winners Kinan Azmeh and Time for Three), performs in the Music Department’s annual Holiday Gala, shares outdoor concerts with the Jazz Ensemble, performs during Wildcat Weekend, collaborates with the Davidson Choirs, and participates in tour during the week prior to the beginning of the spring semester. Several orchestra members also have the opportunity to play in the pit for spring musicals that take place every other year in collaboration with the Theatre Department. On occasion, the orchestra also collaborates with Opera Workshop.

Listen to the DCSO


  • Mondays and Wednesdays from 4:30-6:15 p.m. in Sloan 200
  • Dress rehearsals on the days preceding concerts

If you have questions or would like additional information, please email DCSO Director Tara Villa Keith at