Dubuque Symphony Orchestra

A nonprofit organization

$1,399 raised by 17 donors

We are excited to be a part of Great Give Day - a day for friends, families, and community members to come together for 24 hours to celebrate and support local nonprofits!  

The DSO impacts more than 20,000 individuals, annually.  Your Great Give Day gift will support the DSO’s: 

  • Four Youth Ensembles, a premier training program for 75 young musicians in our community
  • Arts Trek concerts for 4,500  local 3rd and 5th graders
  • Adopt-a-Musician program for  1,700 local 4th graders
  • Summer Melodies concert at the Arboretum, which is free and open to the public
  • Purchase of important musical instruments and sound equipment
  • Guest artists with their travel and hospitality costs

Your gift today is critically important because it has an immediate and positive impact on our mission by helping to meet daily expenditures. Moreover, it helps to fill in the gaps not covered by ticket sales or other sources of revenue such as sponsorships and grants. 


Mission:  The mission of the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra (DSO) is to engage the tri-state community and enrich its quality of life through live musical performances and educational programs. Its primary focus is performance to engage, enlighten and educate people living in the tri-state area. The DSO will impact more than 20,000 individuals, including 6,200 children in Dubuque and the tri-state region this year!

Music Concerts and Events:  Even though COVID resulted in cancelled and rescheduled performances, the DSO is once again offering a full schedule of performances and events: Five pairs of classical music concerts, three holiday concerts, two Ultimate Rock Hits and Ultimate Country Hits concerts as well as a summertime pops concert.

Youth Ensembles and Music Camps: The DSO maintains four youth training ensembles, and created a new quartet, Suonare, to perform at community events. After a two-year hiatus, its summer string camp middle- and high school students interested in further developing their musical talents returned in June 2022. In Fall of 2023, the DSO will run one of two Symphony Day events to provide middle-school string musicians with an additional opportunity to develop their music skills. 

School-Based Education Programs: 3rd and 5th Grade Arts Trek educational, classical music concerts impacts 4,500 students, annually, and its 4th Grade Adopt a Musician program impacts 1,700 students at 16 schools in Dubuque and Platteville.  

DSO History:  The Dubuque Symphony Orchestra (DSO) was established in 1958 as the University Civic Symphony, having been under the auspices of the University of Dubuque for many years prior. Founding Music Director Dr. Parviz Mahmoud retired in 1985 after 27 years. His successor, Nicholas Palmer, increased the number of concerts, added new pops and education programs plus strengthened the artistic caliber of the orchestra until being named Conductor Emeritus in 1999.   Dr. William Intriligator was chosen to be the third Music Director and Conductor in 2000. 

DSO Today:  Thanks to Maestro Intriligator's leadership, the DSO has attracted new audiences and musicians, introduced staged opera, musical theater and ballet productions, added more education and pops concerts, attracted nationally recognized guest artists and soloists, and forged new community partnerships. 

The orchestra is governed by a 23-member volunteer Board of Directors who works closely with Executive Director Mark Wahlert and Music Director/Conductor Dr. William Intriligator. There are six board committees: development, education, finance, governance, marketing and planning. Annual operations are guided by a one-year business plan and a five-year strategic plan. 

The orchestra's primary discipline area is music performance. A typical season includes 19 concerts, in which 50-60 professional, classically trained musicians perform five pairs of Classical Music concerts, three Holiday concerts, one Family concert, two performances of an Ultimate Rock Hits and Ultimate Country Hits concerts and a free Summer Melodies concert at the Arboretum featuring light Classics, pop tunes and patriotic music. 

A secondary focus is education. The DSO sponsors four youth training ensembles, and performs for approximately 4,500 of elementary students via the free Arts Trek program. Orchestra members also visit more than a dozen elementary schools five times a year through the Adopt a Musician program and perform at area nursing care facilities on a rotating basis. The DSO's League, comprised of 150 volunteers, support a portion of these important music education programs. 

Approximately 20,000 - 25,000 residents are impacted by the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra each year.


Thank you for supporting the DSO and investing in the magic of music. We are honored to be a part of what makes the Dubuque area such a special place to live, work and play!

Organization Data


Organization name

Dubuque Symphony Orchestra

Tax id (EIN)



Arts & Culture


2728 Asbury Rd Ste 900
Dubuque, IA 52001