San Francisco Symphony Launches Online Interactive History Timeline

Media-rich site features video, archival audio and rarely seen photos and documents from the San Francisco Symphony’s first 100 years


In the second week of its celebratory 100th season, the San Francisco Symphony has launched a web-based interactive history timeline at, where Symphony and history fans can explore the Orchestra's major milestones and accomplishments. This media-rich site features video excerpts from the new documentary San Francisco Symphony at 100, premiering on KQED 9 Public TV Friday,September 16 at 9 pm and airing in repeat broadcasts throughout the month, archival audio recordings, short excerpts from the new book Music for a City, Music for the World by Larry Rothe, and rarely seen photos and documents from the San Francisco Symphony’s archives. Together these elements tell the story of the birth, growth and success of one of the country’s top orchestras and its place in San Francisco history and culture. The Symphony's first century also comes to life at the San Francisco Main Library in a historical exhibit on display through January 9, 2012. A free screening of the San Francisco Symphony at 100 documentary will be shown there on Wednesday, October 5 at 6 pm.

Entitled 100 Years with the San Francisco Symphony, the interactive timeline allows visitors to explore chronologically, or to select aspects of the orchestra’s history by color-coded themes titled Builders and Leaders, For The People, Education, A Place for Music, Pioneers and Innovators, New Music, Music Makers, On the Road, Recordings, and an Audio Tour. The timeline is packed with highlights of the Orchestra and the city’s history from 1848 to 2011, offering video, still images, and a generous sampling of music recordings that enable users to trace the evolving sound of the orchestra. The SFS history timeline is a Flash-based application that was designed and developed by Adobe Experience Design as an in-kind donation.

The San Francisco Symphony is a leader among orchestras in embracing new media. From its first broadcast in 1926 to the launch, in 2001, of the Orchestra’s own in-house audio and video recording label, and its nationally broadcast television series Keeping Score, the SFS has been at the forefront of harnessing media and technology as a way to make classical music accessible to all. In its Centennial Season in addition to the book, documentary and timeline, the SFS broadcast its opening gala on American Public Media radio and recorded the concert for later television broadcast on Great Performances. In addition, Bay Area Residents and visitors can experience SFS history first hand in two historical exhibits: in the Jewett Gallery at the San Francisco Main Library through January 9, 2012; and at the San Francisco International Airport’s Terminal 3 where a photography exhibition titled The San Francisco Symphony on Tour will be on display from March 1 through May 31, 2012.


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