Of all the performing arts, it's music for which Philadelphia is most renowned and the Philadelphia Orchestra of which its residents are most proud. Though the Orchestra has undergone some financial hardships in recent years, the hope is it can rebound and regain its place among the world's elite. The city also serves as a major stop for touring productions of shows from A Chorus Line to Spring Awakening, and the local theater scene, which supports more than two dozen regional and local companies, is thriving.
Since the opening of the Kimmel Center in 2001, Philadelphia has enjoyed an embarrassment of riches when it comes to performance space. The Academy of Music, the Philadelphia Orchestra's previous home, remains open in all its finery; the Annenberg and Painted Bride house everything from theater to performance art; and both the Mann Center and the Susquehanna Bank Center remain premier outdoor amphitheaters.
Classical music in Philadelphia begins with the world-renowned Philadelphia Orchestra, which, under music director Yannick Nézet-Séguin, has kept its remarkable pedigree. But there is also the Chamber Orchestra, which is also housed in the glorious Kimmel Center; the venerable Philly Pops; and the very talented students of the Curtis Institute, to round out the bill.