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 50 student musicians, the DCSO performs a wide range of repertoire from the Baroque to the present. The orchestra rehearses twice weekly and performs two to four full concerts per semester. Throughout the season, the ensemble features winners of our annual concerto competition, highlights guest artists, performs in the Music Department’s annual Holiday Gala, shares outdoor concerts with the Jazz Ensemble, performs during Family Weekend, and participates in an annual tour during the week prior to the beginning of the spring semester.

The DCSO performs a musical in collaboration with the Theatre Department once every four years, and, on occasion, participates in collaborative performances with the Choral Arts Society of Davidson, Chorale, and Opera Workshop.

For more than 10 years, the DCSO has continued its endeavor entitled Concerts for a Cause. During our concerts in the Duke Family Performance Hall, ticket sales and/or donations at the door are given to various charitable organizations chosen by members of the orchestra or by our audience members.

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