Discover the benefits of making a legacy gift to your Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Planned gifts provide the resources that create extraordinary opportunities and preserve our future for generations to come.

Whether it's a straightforward bequest in your will or trust, a charitable gift annuity, or naming the CSO as a beneficiary of your retirement fund, planned gifts support the CSO's long-term fiscal stability and often provide financial benefits to you as well. Tax savings, current cash payments, supplemental support for family members and friends — these and other benefits are available depending on your circumstances and objectives. All planned giving donors enjoy the benefits of membership in the Theodore Thomas Society, named in honor of the founding music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Through special activities and access to VIP Patron Services, the Theodore Thomas Society honors its members by enhancing their appreciation of music and their sense of belonging to the CSO family.

Click here to read the latest edition of CSO Giving Notes, our charitable gift planning guide.


How can I become a member of the Theodore Thomas Society?

Make a financial arrangement to benefit your Chicago Symphony Orchestra. We can help you understand the options available and the ways to go about setting up a plan that is just right for you. If you have already included the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in your will or trust, please contact our Director of Planned Giving, Al Andreychuk or call 312-294-3150.

To become a General Member of the Theodore Thomas Society, it is not necessary to provide documentation. Your word is enough. However, we appreciate knowing the details of your plan. That way, you can be sure that the gift works as you intended. To receive the additional benefits of the Stradivarian Associates, a unique group within the Theodore Thomas Society, we ask you to provide documentation of an irrevocable planned gift of $50,000 or a revocable planned gift of at least $100,000.


What are the general benefits of membership?

  • Annual Theodore Thomas Society Luncheon in connection with a concert at Symphony Center.
  • An invitation to the Annual Meeting of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association.
  • Recognition in program books throughout the season and in the Annual Report.
    (Those who wish to remain anonymous may certainly do so.)
  • An invitation to all Open Rehearsals of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
  • An invitation to a backstage tour of Symphony Center.
  • Invitations to tours, special concerts and galas sponsored by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
  • Access to VIP Patron Services.


What are the additional benefits enjoyed by the Stradivarian Associates?

  • Full membership in The Richard and Helen Thomas Club at Symphony Center. The CSO’s private dining facility, The Thomas Club occupies the eighth and ninth floors of Symphony Center. The Thomas Club offers its members a spectacular view and delicious cuisine prepared by its talented culinary staff.
  • An invitation to two Salon Series events.