Photo of the Eiffel Tower2024 - France

The Symphony will embark with the Cal Poly Choirs on a performance tour to France in June, 2024, visiting Paris, Bayeux, the Normandy American Cemetery, Chateau Chambord and Chateau Chenonceau (Loire Valley), Versailles, and Tours. 

A performance in La Madeleine Church, where both Saint-Saëns and Fauré held the post of church organist, will round out the experience.




Past National / International Tours

We undertake national or international tours approximately every four years. These tours allow us to share our music-making with audiences far and wide, experience different regions of the United States and different countries of the world, and form lasting friendships with each other.

Photo of students in front of Dvorak Hall2016 - Central Europe

In June 2016, the Cal Poly Symphony traveled to Central Europe, performing in the Matthias Church (Budapest), Dvorak Hall (Prague) and St. Stephen's Cathedral (Vienna).  In each city, we collaborated with European choirs: the Prelude Choir of Budapest (Hungary), Charles University Choir (Prague, Czech Republic), Prague Singers (Czech Republic) and Cantus Novus Wien (Vienna, Austria).

In each of these world-class cities, we benefited from a guided tour and a balance between planned activities and free time, during which Symphony members could explore on their own.  This they did!  Travelers enjoyed the huge variety of cultural sights these cities offered and relaxed a bit in their down time (see our Facebook page for pictures).

Photo of students in the Kennedy Center2012 - Washington D.C.

In April 2012, the Cal Poly Symphony was invited to perform as the showcase ensemble of the Washington, D.C. International Music Festival. The concert, which took place in the renowned Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (pictured), was the culmination of this four-day festival.

In the days before our performance, students had the opportunity to visit museums on the National Mall, dance at a fantastic club, and experience the cultural wealth of our nation's capitol first hand.





Past In-state Tours

The Symphony travels within its home state of California to meet musically active high school students, perform for them, and discuss how one can continue to be a musician at Cal Poly regardless of major. We also use the opportunity to attend performances of the best orchestras in the state and visit each city's top cultural attractions.

2023 - San Jose / San Francisco

Symphony members met and coached sectionals for students at Evergreen Valley High School before performing a concert that included music from Studio Ghibli films.  They then spent a free day in San Francisco and saw the San Francisco Symphony, with Michael Tilson Thomas, perform Mahler's Symphony No. 6.

2018 - Los Angeles

We first performed Rimsky-Korsakov's Capriccio Espagnol and Vaughan Williams' Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis for students at Glendora High School.  After meeting, mingling and answering questions about college, Symphony members spent a free afternoon in Los Angeles and saw the Los Angeles Philharmonic, under Gustavo Dudamel, perform Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde with groundbreaking visual effects.

2015 - San Francisco

The Symphony traveled to San Francisco to perform for - and meet - students at Lowell High School, a public magnet school known for its academic excellence. We also attended a truly inspirational concert of the San Francisco Symphony and enjoyed activities organized by our student officers.

2011 - Los Angeles

We visited the Community Youth Orchestra of Southern California (Irvine, CA) and performed Bach's Concerto for Two Violins. We then invited the musicians to join us for a side-by-side reading of Stokowski's arrangement of Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D Minor and a reading of their repertoire: Beethoven's Symphony No. 3, "Eroica" (I). We rounded out our tour by attending a Los Angeles Philharmonic concert, with Gustavo Dudamel conducting Mahler's Symphony No. 9. Incredible!

2010 - Santa Rosa

The Symphony traveled north to the Bay Area and played Dvorák's Symphony No. 9, "From the New World" for the Santa Rosa High School. We attended a concert of the San Francisco Symphony, featuring music of Ravel, Messaien and George Benjamin, and the next day, explored the museums and grounds of San Francisco's Golden Gate Park.

2009 - San Diego

On the suggestion (urging) of one of our student officers, we traveled south to San Diego. It was an excellent idea! We played Rachmaninoff's Second Piano Concerto (W. Terrence Spiller, piano) for the El Camino High School string orchestras and explored Balboa Park, all in one day. While some students chose the San Diego Zoo, others were treated to an impromptu tour of the Air and Space Museum before relaxing over dinner in the Gaslamp District downtown.

2007 - Los Angeles

We had the opportunity to play with (not for) another orchestra in 2007. Our tour culminated with a side-by-side performance of Respighi's Pines of Rome with the Pasadena Young Musicians Orchestra. Before this concert, we had the chance to explore Old Town Pasadena and attend a Los Angeles Philharmonic performance of Shostakovich's Cello Concerto No. 1 and Elgar's Enigma Variations.

2006 - San Francisco

Our very first tour took us north to San Francisco, where we gave a preview performance of our entire Spring Concert: Elgar's Sea Pictures (Jacalyn Kreitzer, mezzo-soprano) and Holst's The Planets. We performed for the Aragon High School orchestra, which had visited Cal Poly earlier for a clinic. We also enjoyed a San Francisco Symphony performance of William Schuman's Violin Concerto (Gil Shaham, violin), and Robert Schumann's Symphony No. 3, “Rhenish.”

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