ISO’s top executive steps down


Simon Crookall, President and CEO of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra (ISO), has announced he is leaving the ISO after leading Indiana’s largest arts organization into a transformative era of artistic vision and innovative programming directions, including the appointment of the ISO’s new Music Director, Krzysztof Urbanski, the naming of Time for Three as the ISO’s first ensemble-in-residence, the adoption of the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra as an integral part of the ISO’s Learning Community and the introduction of new programming such as the successful Stella Artois Happy Hour at the Symphony series.

Crookall said, “After welcoming Krzysztof Urbanski, successfully launching our capital campaign and expanding the ISO’s impact and profile in the community to include collaborations with other arts groups and universities, I am ready to move on to my next challenge.  I wish the great musicians and staff of the ISO every success in the future.”

The ISO’s Board of Directors has appointed Jackie Groth, ISO’s Vice President of Finance and Strategic Planning, as Interim President and CEO, effective immediately. Jackie joined the Orchestra in 2010 after seven years of leadership in finance and administration at Veolia Water. The Board will begin the process of forming a search committee to select a new President and CEO and has asked the ISO’s Executive Leadership Team to continue its work overseeing day-to-day operations of the Orchestra.

ISO Board Chairman John Thornburgh said, “The Board very much appreciates all that Simon and the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra musicians and staff have accomplished during his tenure. Under Simon’s leadership, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra has continued to fulfill our mission of inspiring, entertaining, educating and challenging through innovative programs and symphonic music performed at the highest artistic level.”

“Simon built our financial and programming foundation to the point where the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra can take the next great step forward in the excellence of our performances for concertgoers enjoying a wide range of symphonic music, in our educational outreach for youth and adults who want to appreciate and better understand fine music, and in our collaborative partnerships with the community and arts partners so crucial to the ISO’s continued success,” Thornburgh added.

Concertmaster Zach De Pue stated, “Thanks to Simon, the ISO staff and board, we are in a good place. Very few U.S. cities enjoy what we have here in Indianapolis. Our Orchestra is superb, and Simon worked tirelessly to tell our story. We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.”

Founded in 1930, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra is the largest professional performing arts organization in Indiana and has been recognized with the Arturo Toscanini Music Critics Award for recording of a new composition and by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers for excellence in programming. The ISO serves a broad spectrum of audiences via classical, pops, family and holiday performances as well as educational and community-based outreach initiatives.

In 2010, Krzysztof Urbanski became the seventh Music Director in the ISO’s history and joined the artistic leadership team of Jack Everly, Principal Pops Conductor, and Raymond Leppard, Conductor Laureate. Concertmaster Zach De Pue, one of the youngest concertmasters in the U.S., joined the ISO in 2007. In 2009, the ISO named De Pue’s string trio Time for Three its first ever ensemble-in-residence, and the group has successfully re-created and programmed the ISO’s Happy Hour at the Symphony series and performed in a variety of central Indiana schools and communities.

Outside its historic home at the Hilbert Circle Theatre in downtown Indianapolis, the ISO performs in several Indiana communities and can be heard around the world through its extensive music library at, the largest of any orchestra in the country.

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