Special Events

DSO Names New Executive Director

Saturday, August 01, 2020 at

Incoming exec J.C. Barker brings with him more than 30 years of industry experience.

WILMINGTON, DE—After a months-long search, the Delaware Symphony Orchestra Board of Directors has selected J.C. Barker to head the state’s only professional symphony orchestra. Barker comes to the DSO from the Mobile Symphony after a tenure of almost 13 years with that organization, most recently as General Manager and Director of Artistic Administration. He will begin his tenure at the DSO on May 1.

During his time at the Mobile Symphony, Barker oversaw an orchestra of 75 musicians, developed ties with corporate and civic leaders, and assisted with the development of large capital projects. Like many emerging leaders in orchestra administration, his professional experience began as a classically trained orchestral musician. Because of this he brings a unique understanding of the relationships between musicians, boards of directors, staff, and community.

“I am eager and excited to be joining such an outstanding organization,” said Barker. “The DSO is comprised of the region’s finest and most dedicated musicians. I look forward to working with Music Director David Amado, the musicians and the staff to continue bringing world class performances to the First State.”

A graduate of the prestigious Juilliard School in New York City, Barker will bring both executive and musical expertise to the DSO. His professional relationship with Amado spans many years, and they enjoy a great working relationship.

“J.C. has a sterling reputation in the symphony world,” said Amado. “We know he’ll bring us energy, fresh ideas, and exemplary management and people skills —which together with his years of experience will propel the DSO to new heights.”

Barker was selected after a search that began last fall after Alan Jordan announced his departure from the DSO. The search was headed by a committee that included both DSO Board members and symphony musicians.

“We have been following J.C.’s career for some time now and are very pleased that he has agreed to move to Delaware to lead the orchestra to new levels of success,” said Charles Babcock, President of the Delaware Symphony Orchestra.