The New West Symphony is a regional professional symphony orchestra serving the Los Angeles metropolitan area. It was founded in 1995. The New West's players are professional musicians drawn from the rich pool of classical musicians in the Los Angeles region, many of whom work as session players for film, television and audio recording in the entertainment industry, and play for other area orchestras as well. The New West Symphony is a 501c3 charity governed by a 30-member board of directors.
The orchestra performs in three concert halls: the 1,500-seat Oxnard Performing Arts Center, the 1,800-seat Kavli Theatre at the Antoine Predock-designed Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza in Thousand Oaks, and the 1,200-seat Barnum Hall on the campus of Santa Monica High School. The organization offers six of classical programs annually with multiple concerts, with international guest artists usually featured soloists, as well as New West principal players upon occasion. The organization has a core audience of over 2,500 subscribers.
The symphony was founded in 1995 as the successor to two orchestras that ceased operations, the Ventura County Symphony and the Conejo Symphony Orchestra. Its founding music director was Boris Brott, whose programming emphasized the 19th and 20th century symphonic repertoire. The organization went through a financial crisis around 2008, and musicians took pay cuts to help the New West to survive. During the 2011/2012 season, the symphony's board conducted a search for a new artistic director following Brott's resignation. In May 2012, the orchestra announced the appointment of Marcelo Lehninger, who had conducted the orchestra in January 2011 as an emergency substitution and then again in scheduled appearances in April 2012. Lehninger became music director on September 30, 2012.
The orchestra has served as the touring orchestra for Andrea Bocelli, completing its third such tour in 2010.
Several auxiliary organizations are affiliated with the New West Symphony Association and chartered to raise funds that support the Symphony's programs. These organizations include: