News & Events

Scan the news listing for upcoming events, auditions, competitions, honors and awards by ACSO members.

View our email archives.


ACSO Offices Relocate to Los Angeles

The Association of California Symphony Orchestra's offices will relocate to Los Angeles the first two weeks of October. Regular business hours may be affected due to the transition; however, ACSO is committed to great member services during this time. ACSO will maintain a presence in Sacramento as we are committee to being the statewide voice to advocate to policymakers the importance classical music and the arts have in our communities and people's everyday lives.

What members should know:

  • The new ACSO mailing address is: PO BOX 71439, Los Angeles, CA 90071 (the address on the current membership renewal forms).
  • Our phone number will remain the same (916-484-6744); however, the line may be down between Friday, October 7 and Tuesday, October 11.
  • Our main email address will remain the same ( and we will respond as quickly as possible to all messages.
  • The first issue of Semiquavers in October will be postponed a week. Look for the next issue the week of October 17.
  • Membership logins and passwords to the website will not change until after the office move. If you are having trouble logging in, please contact us at



ACSO Membership Elects Director Emerita and Executive Director Emerita

The Association of California Symphony Orchestras (ACSO) is pleased to announce that Kelly Ruggirello, executive director of the Long Beach Symphony, has been elected an Emeritus Director of the ACSO Board of Directors. In its 43-year history, Ruggirello becomes only one of 9 other elected Emeritus Directors. Ruggirello has served with distinction on the Board for ten years, three of them as its president. Prior to her appointment to the Long Beach Symphony in 2013, she was the executive director of Pacific Chorale. A sought-after arts consultant and early in her career an elementary school teacher, Ruggirello has created a culture of inclusiveness and thoughtfulness in her professional career. The ACSO membership has been the fortunate recipients of her stewardship. Ruggirello states, “There is no greater honor than being recognized by your professional colleagues, so I am humbled by and deeply grateful for this recognition by such an esteemed state-wide organization.

Kris Sinclair, retired executive director of the Association of California Symphony Orchestras (ACSO) has been elected Executive Director Emeritus, the first such designation in ACSO’s history. Before being hired in 1985, Sinclair was president of the Santa Rosa Symphony League and then on its Board of Directors in the 80s. She moved ACSO World Headquarters to Sacramento in 1987. Sinclair understood what the membership needed from its service organization and built ACSO’s services and programs accordingly. “Working at ACSO has not been so much of a job as a calling – and one that gave me joy each day. I leave this position with the richest store of memories that one could ever imagine,” Sinclair said.

Both votes occurred at the Annual Meeting of Members during the Annual Conference on Thursday, August 4, 2016.

Register now

ACSO Announces New Executive Director

June 1, 2016 - The Association of California Symphony Orchestras (ACSO) today announced that Mitch Menchaca has been named the new executive director, succeeding Kris Sinclair who is retiring at the end of September after thirty-one years at the helm.
Mr. Menchaca was selected as a result of a nationwide search which began in January. He has most recently served as vice president of services and chief operating officer for Chorus America, the national membership association of more than 2,000 professional, volunteer, symphonic and children/youth choruses. Prior to that, he was the head of local arts advancement at Americans for the Arts where he designed and executed programs that provided support and resources to the 5,000 local arts agencies across the United States. Before his time in Washington, D.C., he was the senior director of programs for the Arizona Commission for the Arts, where he administered an extensive portfolio of grants from all artistic disciplines, with budgets ranging from $1,000 to more than $10 million. Over the years he has served on numerous boards of directors including The Association of American Cultures, the Robert E. Gard Foundation, and has served on many statewide, regional, and national grant panels including the National Endowment for the Arts. He earned a degree in public administration at Arizona State University, and completed a festival and event management certificate at the University of Minnesota Tourism Center.
“I am honored to follow Kris Sinclair who has built a highly successful model of service for the field,” remarked Mitch Menchaca. “I am excited to work with the ACSO board of directors and membership both to honor her legacy and to build new opportunities for our members that match their growing needs for leadership, skills training and year-round networking, and continue to be the statewide voice to advocate the importance classical music and the arts have in our communities and people’s everyday lives.”
President of the ACSO Board of Directors and executive director of the Long Beach Symphony, Kelly Ruggirello said, “We knew it would be hard to find Kris’ successor, and we couldn’t be happier with Mitch. He will bring us new energy and a ready understanding of the optimal tools for our members. His experience with associations and his passion for classical music are pitch perfect for ACSO.”

Read the Full Press Release Here

League of American Orchestras to Honor ACSO Executive Director Kris Sinclair with the Gold Baton

New York, NY (May 4, 2016) – At the League of American Orchestras’ Conference in Baltimore, June 9-11, the League will present its highest honor, the Gold Baton, to Kris Sinclair, executive director of the Association of California Symphony Orchestras (ACSO). Sinclair, who is retiring this year after thirty-one years at ACSO’s helm, will receive the award at the League’s Annual Meeting, June 10, at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront.

“Over three decades, Kris Sinclair has been a staunch advocate for orchestras, creating a model state orchestra association through her exemplary leadership,” said League President and CEO Jesse Rosen.

Given annually since 1948 for distinguished service to America’s orchestras, the Gold Baton recognizes individuals and institutions whose far-reaching contributions to the field serve to champion and advance the cause of orchestras and symphonic music throughout the country. 

Click here to read the League of American Orchestras' press release announcing the award.

AB 2855 Passes in Reconsideration

It was previously reported that the bill that would harm nonprofits had been stopped.
Unfortunately the bill has passed the Assembly Privacy & Consumer Protection Committee, and will next be heard in the Appropriations Committee.