Symphony Chorus of New Orleans (SCNO) is a 501(c)3 organization, specializing in the performance of choral-orchestral works. Under the direction of Steven Edwards, the 60-member all volunteer community-wide chorus performs numerous concerts each year. Over the past 35 years, the chorus has collaborated with the New Orleans Symphony, The Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, however as of 2015 SCNO produces their own concerts hiring professionals from the LPO and other professional musicians and soloists.
Symphony Chorus (then, known as New Orleans Symphony Chorus) was founded in 1981 by Larry Wyatt under the auspices of the New Orleans Symphony Orchestra. When the New Orleans Symphony Orchestra ceased operations in 1991 and re-emerged as the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, the Chorus reorganized as an entity separate from the orchestra and became known as Symphony Chorus of New Orleans. Today, SCNO functions as a fully independent organization. A community-based volunteer Board of Directors governs all operations of the Chorus.
The Chorus consists of approximately 60 volunteer singers who must pass a comprehensive audition. All singers have considerable experience in choral music and many of them hold professional positions with other choruses and church choirs. All singers commit to weekly rehearsals throughout the season, plus additional time commitments during performance weeks.
Funding is received from public sources, foundations, corporations and individual support.