Detroit Symphony Honors Late President Through Music

The orchestra will celebrate the life of Anne Parsons in concert on Tuesday, May 17



Held in memory of late President Emeritus Anne Parsons (1957–2022) in concert at Orchestra Hall on Tuesday, May 17 at 6 p.m., the program will feature pieces that were special to Parsons. The musicians of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO), led by Music Director Jader Bignamini, will donate their services for this performance.

"Anne led our beloved orchestra with grace, courage, and conviction, never wavering from her strongly held belief that the DSO is the best in the world, and that Detroit is a vibrant and resilient city that deserves an orchestra to match," said DSO President and CEO Erik Rönmark and Board Chair Mark Davidoff. "Anne’s accomplishments as our President and CEO are immeasurable and will resonate deeply within our organization, across our local communities, and in the orchestra industry for decades to come."

"I am honored to have been appointed music director during Anne’s tenure as CEO and to have been able to become close with her, Donald, and Cara," said DSO Music Director Jader Bignamini. "I will never forget Anne’s smile, strength, professionalism, deep humility, and innate sensitivity. Her love for the orchestra and Detroit is our guide as we lead the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.”

Parsons passed away on March 28, 2022, following a long battle with cancer. She served as the DSO’s President and CEO for over 17 years. You can learn more about her legacy here.

Tickets are free and open to the public and can be reserved here. The concert will also be webcast for free at

Ann Parsons began her career at the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C., and went on to serving as General Manager of New York City Ballet and the LA's Hollywood Bowl, as well as Orchestra Manager of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Prior joined the DSO in 2004, and under her leadership, the organization had nine consecutive operating surpluses from 2013 to 2021. Parsons was also responsible for bringing two new music directors to Detroit — Leonard Slatkin in 2007 and Jader Bignamini in 2020. From late 2018 until her retirement in December 2021, she led the DSO while undergoing treatment for lung cancer.