By Pat Doody
staff writer 

Tehachapi Rotary introduced to Bakersfield Symphony

Rotary Club of Tehachapi


May 8, 2021

The Bakersfield Symphony was front and center for Tehachapi Rotary’s April 22 meeting. Executive Director Holly Arnold and Director of Marketing and Development Gabe Adame gave an outline of the organization’s history and plans for their 2021 season.

Arnold has held her position with the symphony since May 2019. Before joining the orchestra she was CEO of the Kern Chapter of the American Red Cross and director of community relations for Hall Ambulance. Adame started with the symphony as executive marketing assistant while he was still working on his degree in Marketing from Cal State Bakersfield.

Adame said that the Bakersfield Symphony, now a 501(c)3 nonprofit, has been around since 1932 when it was just a community orchestra. There were no performances during World War II. The mission of the symphony is to unify and celebrate community through shared music. It is currently financed mostly though donations and grants.

Arnold said that the Symphony is partnering with the community to close the education gap making music education available to all children. She introduced Director of Education Kendra Green who said they had produced 24 video lessons that have had 32,000 views since March 2020. They are putting together small short concerts performed by one to four artists in front yards, adhering to social distance for special events. The goal is to spread the joy of music.

Virtual concerts were the name of the game for the 2020-21 concert season. However, live events are planned for the 2021-22 season featuring pop concerts and family matinees. Youth programs will be both in-person and virtual.

Arnold said the symphony was very excited to be signing a new five-year contract with conductor Stilion Kirov. The Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra is on Facebook and Instagram and can be found on their website at


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