FAQ

When was the MN Sinfonia founded?

Founded in 1989, the MN Sinfonia is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) community-supported organization operating under the legal name “Friends of the Minnesota Sinfonia.”

What is the Sinfonia’s mission?

The MN Sinfonia’s mission is to serve the musical and educational needs of the citizens of Minnesota, with special emphasis given to families with young children, inner-city youth, seniors and those with limited financial means. To further this end, all concerts are offered free of admission charges, and children are welcome and encouraged to attend all performances.

Are you a community orchestra?

No. The MN Sinfonia is a high-caliber orchestra, employing professional musicians and guest soloists. Sinfonia musicians are some of the most highly sought-after in the region, and many have held high positions in orchestras around the world, including the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, RTE National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, Russian State Symphony Orchestra and many others. See bios

How can you afford to offer free concerts?

All Sinfonia concerts and programs are funded through grants from government, corporate and private foundations, plus contributions from more than 600 individuals. Each school program costs more than $5,000, and each weekend of concerts more than $25,000.

Who do you serve?

The Sinfonia’s serves the people of Minnesota. Our concerts attract crowds ranging in age from babes in arms to senior citizens, and include diverse ethnicities, income levels, and socioeconomic standings. According to anonymous concert surveys, over half of Sinfonia audiences have household incomes below $50,000, with 37 percent below $30,000. A majority of inner-city schools participating in the Music in the Schools program report that 90% or more of their students are on free or reduced-price lunches, a marker for poverty. With more than 250 language spoken in Twin Cities schools, our program uses music—the “Universal Language” to excite kids about core academic subjects.

How often do you perform?

The  Sinfonia performs 60 or more free-admission concerts every year. Half of these concerts are performed for the general public during the Winter/Summer Concert Series and Community “Family Pops” Concerts. The others are performed in inner-city public schools as part of the Music in the Schools program.

Accessibility?

  • Wheelchair Access: All venues and parks are fully accessible for people using wheelchairs or persons with limited mobility.
  • MN Relay Service: People who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may call for information using the Minnesota Relay Service, 7-1-1.
  • Large Print Programs: Large print programs are available at every concert.
  • Other Accommodations: Please contact the MN Sinfonia if you need any special accommodations. Sign Language interpretation is provided with three week’s advance notice, and special seats with clear views of the interpreter may be reserved.
  • Contact Info: Office: 612-871-1701, mnsinfonia@mnsinfonia.org

Where do you perform?

The Sinfonia plays at physically accessible Twin Cities and Greater Minnesota venues, including in 2018:
  • The Basilica of Saint Mary, Minneapolis
  • Metropolitan State University, St. Paul
  • First Covenant Church, St. Paul
  • Como Park, St. Paul
  • Lake Harriet Band Shell, Minneapolis
  • Temple Israel, Minneapolis
  • Temple of Aaron, St. Paul
  • Roseville Lutheran Church, St. Paul
  • Webber Park, Minneapolis
  • Harding High School, St. Paul
  • Fairmont Opera House, Fairmont
  • Paramount Theater, St. Cloud
  • Worthington Performing Arts Center, Worthington
  • Annunciation Church, Minneapolis
  • Stone Arch Bridge Festival, Minneapolis Riverfront
Past venues have included:
  • Loring Park, Minneapolis
  • Lake Phalen Regional Park, St. Paul
  • Catholic Eldercare, Minneapolis
  • The Minnesota Zoo, Apple Valley
  • Caponi Art Park, Eagan
  • Northside YMCA, Minneapolis
  • East Side YMCA, St. Paul

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