Playing a Critical Role in the Region

Since its founding in 1982, Portland Columbia Symphony has become a staple of Multnomah County’s arts scene, bringing 62 paid core musicians together each year to perform a classical subscription series and myriad education and outreach events for audiences based in both Portland and Gresham. What started out as a volunteer orchestra formed by Jerry Leudders would soon become an incorporated non-profit organization, when John Trudeau took over as PCSO’s music director and conductor in 1986. Huw Edwards served in that same role from 2000 to 2012, before Steven Byess took the reins in 2014 after a national search.

Playing a critical role in the artistic landscape of the Portland Metro area, PCSO provides affordable and comfortable concert environments for audiences of all kinds, while also providing competitive, creative jobs and opportunities for the area’s leading freelance professionals, music educators, and newly established conservatory-trained musicians. As the only orchestra that performs regularly in East County, PCSO is a growing presence in the Gresham area, reaching record audiences each season.

We value Excellence, Community, Personal Connection, and Accessibility.

The mission of the Portland Columbia Symphony is to present quality performances of standard, worthy but rarely performed, and new orchestral works, through the presentation of national, regional, and local composers, soloists, and musicians in concerts and outreach settings September through May. Its primary goal is to gather artists and audiences in friendly, affordable, and accessible concert experiences that spark authentic engagement and deepen peoples’ connections to classical music. PCSO seeks to amplify the audience experience through the design of culturally and locally relevant programming, an inclusive narrative, and educational programs that engage all corners of our community.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at PCSO

Portland Columbia Symphony recognizes that orchestral music traditions have historically been shaped largely by privilege, exclusivity, and bias. Guided by the belief that our artform is strengthened and made more meaningful when it is accessible and representative of our diverse, changing communities, we commit to changing the narrative in the following ways:

  • Creating space onstage each season for all who seek creative expression via the orchestral arts, including, but not limited to, living, local, female, and minority composers/collaborators.
  • Adopting systems and practices that acknowledge the varying needs of a diverse audience, including disadvantaged, minority, and at-risk populations and those from differing socioeconomic, ethnic, and age groups.
  • Recruiting personnel, especially at the leadership level, who bring diverse viewpoints and backgrounds to elevate minority voices, bring willingness to expand institutional perspective, and bring balance to the decision-making process.

As we work to create a welcoming, accessible, and relevant concert experience for the widest possible audience, we recognize that the path to greater inclusivity is neither routine nor predictable; we therefore commit ourselves to fostering a culture of curiosity, learning, and adapting for the sake of our artform and community.

Make a difference at PCSO

Curious, talented, and open-minded individuals keep Portland Columbia Symphony going and growing on all levels. As artists and arts administrators, we recognize that our best, most creative work happens when we learn from our diverse perspectives and experiences; we are an equal opportunity employer.



PCSO announces auditions for Section Violin and Principal Oboe, as well as substitute positions for Bassoon and Tuba. Consisting of 62 core players, members range from full-time musicians and music educators to musically skilled individuals hailing from unrelated professions. PCSO concerts are accessible and affordable, and give audiences opportunities to hear classical standards alongside pieces by underrepresented composers. Rehearsals are held in downtown Portland, with Friday evening concerts in downtown Portland, repeated in East County on Sunday afternoons. All members are paid per service.

Due to Covid-19 restrictions, and for the safety of everyone auditioning for PCSO, auditions for the 2020-2021 Season will be submitted electronically via video recording. Please consult our Guidelines and Instructions prior to recording.

All audition videos must be submitted by end-of-day June 26, 2020.

Guidelines and Instructions


Core Position Openings


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Sub List Openings


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Administrative Team

There are currently no administrative openings.


Request a Ticket Donation

Portland Columbia Symphony is pleased to offer local non-profit organizations donated ticket vouchers to help with auctions and fundraisers. Vouchers are good for two tickets to one PCSO concert, and are valued at $70 each.

Note: If you’re a social service organization looking to support clients with concert tickets, visit our Community Connections page instead.

Please submit ticket donation requests at least four weeks prior to your event – if approved, you will receive your voucher within two weeks. Note that we are unable to support organizations with political or religious affiliations.

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Contact PCSO

Portland Columbia Symphony’s offices are located in the Rose City Park neighborhood of Portland, in the Rose City Park United Methodist Church.

Physical address:
5830 NE Alameda
Portland, OR 97213

Mailing address:
PO Box 6559
Portland, OR 97228

Box Office: Open Monday through Thursday, 10 am – 2 pm: 503-234-4077 /

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