VSO History

Nearly 70 years of classical music for the Valley

Founded in 1952 as an orchestra of volunteer musicians, the Valley Symphony Orchestra (VSO) is in its 69th season of classical music performances in the Rio Grande Valley.  Under the baton of Dr. Carl Seale, the orchestra was established as a student and community ensemble at the University of Texas – Pan American, a legacy institution of the University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley, and has since developed into an all-professional ensemble under the direction of Maestro Peter Dabrowski. In 1984, the Valley Symphony Orchestra Chorale was formed.

The Valley Symphony Orchestra is a resident ensemble at the McAllen Performing Arts Center and presents its season there in the heart of the Convention Center district. A state-of-the-art 1700-seat performance hall, the MPAC opened in 2017 and is acoustically tuned to the Valley Symphony Orchestra.

Annually, the VSO presents 5-6 classical concerts, 6 educational concerts, and several special chamber and community events along with a gala and fundraising performance. With the organization’s prime location at the McAllen Performing Arts Center, its dedication to arts education for Valley students, and its continually expanding organizational capacity, the VSO is poised to strengthen its impact and serve as a catalyst for the growth of arts and culture in the Rio Grande Valley.