This orchestra’s foundation began in Dallas, Texas, with musicians who performed from 1890 as members of the Dallas Symphony Club, which had been co-founded by the German conductor Hans Kressig. They were confident enough to perform a public concert under the conductorship of Hans Kressig in 1900 and this concert led to a further five seasons of performances.
The orchestra was named the Beethoven Symphony Orchestra sometime before 1905 and the conductorship had been passed to William Fried. In 1911 the leadership was taken over by Carl Venth and the orchestra was officially renamed the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.
Over the ensuing years, except for suspension of work during WWI and again during WWII, it added more members, became an entirely professional orchestra and started to gain a very good reputation. After the appointment of Antal Dorati as its music director in 1945 it became known as one of the major American orchestras.
Since then it has been led by many acclaimed music directors that include Georg Solti, Andrew Litton, Eduardo Mara and Max Rudolf and in 2007 its 15th music director, Jaapvan Zweden, was appointed. It has also counted as it members many respected musicians such the percussionist William Kraft and the cellist Janos Starker to name just two of many.
It was temporarily suspended once more in 1974 due to financial difficulties and the resignation of Max Rudolf, but it is now an acclaimed orchestra that has achieved success through its live performances and award winning recordings. It bases itself at the Meyerson Symphony Center in Dallas’s Arts District and involves itself in music education projects such as the DSO Kids Club.