Rhinegold Photo credit: Rick Giase

Katy Wright

Deputy Editor, Classical Music

Russell Jones appointed as president and CEO of Stamford Symphony

10:25, 11th October 2017

Russell Jones is to replace Barbara Smith-Soroca as CEO and president of the Stamford Symphony in January 2018.

Smith-Soroca has held the position for 39 years. She joined the organisation in 1979 when Skitch Henderson was music director and the players were accomplished amateurs, and has overseen its development into the area’s leading ensemble, employing professional musicians and undertaking regular education and community engagement work.

The orchestra will open its 2017/18 season with a gala weekend on 14 and 15 October celebrating her contribution. Her legacy will be further commemorated through the Soroca Fund for American Music, which will allow the orchestra to perform more repertoire composed by Americans; to date, the fund has raised more than $125,000.

Smith-Soroca described her time with the orchestra as ‘a privilege’, adding: ‘I cannot conceive of a better career choice. This is an experience that I will always treasure, and I am grateful for the opportunity.’

Jones brings a wealth of fundraising and leadership experience to his new role, having held various positions in arts management on both sides of the Atlantic. In the UK he held posts with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Scottish Chamber Orchestras, and was director of the Association of British Orchestras before moving to the United States in 2007. He was vice president of marketing and membership at the League of American Orchestras between 2007 and 2012, when he moved to the New York Philharmonic as director of friends and planned giving, and later held positions including director of major gifts.


The organisation is currently searching for a new music director to succeed Eckart Preu, who concluded his 12-year tenure at the end of last season. In 2017-18, five candidates will each have an opportunity to conduct a subscription weekend as part of the process to decide who will be the Orchestra’s next artistic leader.


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