Civic in the City


Although our regular concert was suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic, KCCO musicians have been meeting in small groups to rehearse and perform while maintaining appropriate safety measures.  An expansion of our outreach efforts, begun by violinist Jennifer Mitchell, “Civic in the City” is a series of recitals prepared and performed in various neighborhoods around town.  Debbie Allen, principal clarinetist, began the neighborhood performances with a series of four recitals in her neighborhood during the months of June and July.  Duos, trios, and quartets were performed outdoors for appreciative, and safely socially distanced,  audience members.

A highlight of Civic in the City is the performance of an original composition for string quartet, As The River Flows, written by our own Debbie Allen.  The inspiration for the composition was watching nature unfold in all its glory, while sheltering in place, at the onset of the virus.  As The River Flows includes three movements: Life Endures, Nature Restores, and Water Glistens.

During the month of August, Civic in the City recitals have included a duo performance by Ruth Sadasivan and Jennifer Mitchell and a combined performance of string and woodwind players.  Additional neighborhood recitals are in the planning stages. If you would like to host a KCCO performance in your neighborhood, please email us and we’ll get in touch to discuss the when, where, and how!


Upcoming Performance Dates

September 17 (Lee’s Summit)
September 24 (Brookside)
October 2 (KCMO)
October 3 (KCMO)
October 7 (KCMO)
October 10 (KCMO – Waldo)

Due to limited space, we must limit the number of attendees at these performances. If you would like to attend a performance, please email us to sign up for more specific Civic in the City updates.



Current Season


KCCO’s 62nd Season – Update!

Dear Kansas City Civic Orchestra Patrons,

Like many orchestras around the country and the world, KCCO has had to make some difficult decisions as a result of the Covid 19 virus – including canceling our 2020 concerts. However, we are still looking forward and are now excited to announce our spring 2021 concert season!

March 6, 2021: This concert at Atonement Lutheran Church will feature an underserved composer, Florence B. Price. Price’s Symphony No. 1 in E minor was first premiered in 1933 by the Chicago Symphony. Since then, it has been performed only infrequently. This symphony combines Price’s influences of African-American folk song and spirituals with subtle nods to the composer, Dvorak.

April 25, 2021: Our April concert in Helzberg Hall will feature the Chatelain Young Artist Competition Winner from 2020 and the soon-to-be-announced 2021 winner. Our 2020 winner, Theodore Ohly, will be performing the first movement of Lalo’s Symphonie espagnole. The natural and sensitive acoustics of this world-renowned hall will enhance the Civic Orchestra’s programed works featuring the small to the very large. The concert will open with Kansas City native Virgil Thompson’s The Plow That Broke the Plains Suite and will close with the colossal final movement of Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 8.

Typically our April concert would conclude the orchestra’s season, but this year we’ve added a concert in May!

May 22, 2021: Who doesn’t love some classic favorites? Our final concert will feature some of classical music’s favorite composers and their works, including composers such as Copland, Tchaikovsky, and Wagner, to name a few.

In addition to our upcoming concerts, the Kansas City Civic Orchestra is featuring live musical performances around the greater Kansas City area – our Civic in the City series. Learn more here or by joining us on Facebook by searching “Kansas City Civic Orchestra”.

The Kansas City Civic Orchestra’s free admission to concerts is a deeply rooted mission. We are always touched by the generosity of our supporters, which allows us to continue this mission. Your passion for our community orchestra is inspiring, and we thank you for your continued support!

To say we are excited to be back together rehearsing and preparing concerts is an understatement. We truly look forward to once again offering high quality and inspiring concerts to the Greater Kansas City community. With hope and excitement we look towards our 2020 – 2021 season.

Thank you for being a part of our community!

Chris Kelts, Music Director

*All concerts are subject to change or cancelation in accordance with health guidelines. **Repertoires are subject to change.


Educational Outreach


Our experience with the KCCO was beyond amazing! Jennifer and Don did such a great job with our students. It was very enjoyable for all. – Lisa B., Shawnee Mission Instructional Support Center


The educational outreach programs of The Kansas City Civic Orchestra seek to cultivate an appreciation for the experience of live instrumental and orchestral music, and to provide support for music education to community members of all age levels throughout the Greater Kansas City area.

The orchestra’s educational outreach activities currently include:

  • Pre-concert instrument petting zoos, supervised opportunities for children to hold and experience playing real orchestral instruments.
  • In-school, interactive, participatory performances and demonstrations for elementary students, involving stringed and other instruments.IMG_4520
  • “Master classes” held for school-aged children studying particular classical instruments, provided by soloists using those instruments to perform during concerts with the Civic Orchestra.
  • Musical entertainment events for nursing homes and similar care centers in the area.
  • “Youth Concerts” included among the Civic’s regular season programming, featuring compositions familiar to children of school age, e.g., themes from popular adventure and science-fiction films.
  • Soloist competitions offering students in local elementary and secondary schools a chance to perform with the Civic Orchestra.


For more information about the Civic Orchestra’s educational outreach activities, please contact us at


What a joy to know you shared your time and talents with our Grandma. We know your happiness and enthusiasm for music. It is wonderful to know you where there. Thank you so much for your service to the community.  – The Rorie Family



Welcome to KCCO


Each season the Kansas City Civic Orchestra is proud to offer high quality concerts featuring a range of music and numerous outreach activities that enrich the community. We are proud to be a part of the diverse music community in the Kansas City area!