Several fine musical ensembles can be found around the Metropolitan Region. From the delicate melodies of a string quartet to the bold, brassy tones of Alabama jazz, audiences of all musical tastes can enjoy first-rate performances by talented musicians.
Though not formally established until 1933, the Alabama Symphony Orchestra began dazzling audiences in 1921. While their name has changed several times over the years, the ASO has always provided outstanding performances of varying musical styles. The ASO also consistently welcomes some of the finest guest performers in the world to Alabama.
Located in the historic Carver Theater, the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame was established in 1978 to commemorate the role that jazz has played in our state's culture. Exhibits detail the musical accomplishments of jazz legends like Nat King Cole, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald and Ersine Hawkins. Visitors can take a journey through the history of jazz, from early boogie-woogie to the most outrageous offerings of modern experimental jazz. The Hall of Fame sponsors a number of concerts and jazz events throughout the year.
Re-formed in 1999, Opera Birmingham has quickly built an enthusiastic audience for the art form. Opera Birmingham's season includes classic productions from such masters as Strauss and Mozart. The company also stages several special shows for children and young audiences, and the Opera in Schools tour brings imaginative performances to area schools each year.
Chamber music has a distinct sound and appeal; the small size of the ensembles and typically intimate venues offset by the rich, moving sounds of sonatas, overtures and minuets. The Birmingham Chamber Music Society has been bringing some of the most talented chamber musicians in the world to Birmingham and surrounding communities since the 1930's. Performances are held in recital halls at the University of Alabama and the Alys Stephens Center.