Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging Vision Statement

The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra believes in inviting human connection through music.

To realize this vision, the ISO makes decisions with equity and belonging at the heart of our practice. In so doing, we build a stronger and more sustainable organization with the ability to create inclusiveness through music. In this practice, we use music to bridge gaps of understanding and connection in our society, holistically increase the diversity within our organization, and deepen our collective creative perspectives.

We endeavor to model practices of diversity, inclusion and equity in all that we do, including programming, people and culture, and community building. Through these practices, we will build a universal sense of belonging for all who connect with the ISO.


For the ISO, diversity refers to various aspects of identity, including but not limited to: race and ethnicity, gender identity and sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, different abilities, religion/faith, and the many other aspects of personal and group identity that make us unique. We will make programming choices through a focused lens of acceptance and equity, using music to amplify underrepresented voices within our Central Indiana community. The ISO is committed to engaging with and putting these voices center stage, and recognizes this is the first of many steps in our process to become an inclusive organization.

People and Culture
The ISO commits to increasing the racial diversity of our musicians, volunteers, staff and board, and to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for all. We recognize this will require us to examine and unlearn pre-existing methods and procedures that have been exclusionary. The ISO acknowledges the many and varied forms of historical and current discrimination present in our society. We will name the explicit role racism and other forms of oppression have played in the classical music industry in order to become an actively anti-racist institution.

Community Building
The needs of our Central Indiana community inform everything we do. It is our role as a 21st-century orchestra to use music to examine and challenge inequities, and also to uplift our community and instill unity, across all backgrounds and identities. We are all enriched when we connect through music and learn from each other, and we commit to exploring all cultures, artists and works. By recognizing and appreciating varying cultures and musical traditions found in Central Indiana, we expand the ISO’s reach, relevance, and vitality.

Collectively, we are committed to making the necessary shifts in perspective that allow the ISO to learn, transform, and lead, while engaging and learning from our community. Orchestral music inspires and connects. The ISO will be with you when our community rejoices, when we lament, and when we heal.