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Maryland gives $500k to BSO summer touring program

Governor Wes Moore made a stop by the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, home of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO), on Thursday morning to announce the BSO is getting $500,000 from the state’s general fund to support its Music for Maryland tour. That’s the symphony’s statewide classical music tour that launched last year. It’s a traveling music extravaganza meant to showcase the orchestra in free or pay-what-you-will performances across all of the state’s 23 counties and Baltimore City.

Moore was accompanied by many of the state’s most influential executives and leaders, including Baltimore City Mayor Brandon Scott and Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski.

“This investment will not just spread sounds, it will spread hope,” said Governor Moore. “Hope to the person over in West Baltimore who hears classical music for the first time. And that young girl who maybe thinks that she'll pick up an instrument hope… to the older adult who was living and retired on the Eastern Shore, who remembers what it was like to go out to the symphony, but hasn't listened to live music in years.”

Governor Wes Moore on arts and equity

It should be a welcome help for the symphony, which has suffered from steep financial losses over the last decade. After the COVID-19 pandemic and then financial woes that caused the BSO to suspend its summer programing in 2019, the symphony announced Thursday that it will be running a full concert series, the Music for Maryland tour, and an extension of its free Symphony in the City community concert series. That extension will include a four-week concert series in August through partnership with the Urban Oasis in West Baltimore.

Moore doubled down on his administration’s commitment to the arts all across Maryland. “We are committed to building a state that leaves no one behind. And we know that the arts are going to be a core glue to actually make that happen.”

Nothing describes Baltimore like music

Emily is a general assignment news reporter for WYPR.
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