The Calvin Simmons Legacy Society was named after late Music Director and Bay Area classical music pioneer Calvin Simmons. Simmons led the original Oakland Symphony Orchestra from 1978 to his death in 1982 at the age of 32. He garnered many firsts, including the first African-American to be named conductor of a major U.S. symphony orchestra.

While his life was too short, his impact on Oakland and the Bay Area was deep and lasts to this day. And while the current Oakland Symphony is a modern re-imagining of the Oakland Symphony Simmons conducted, his memory and his pioneering musical spirit runs deep in our veins.

Members of the Calvin Simmons Legacy Society help fulfill the bold future Simmons began in 1978. By making a charitable bequest or other planned gift, they help build a strong foundation for a future of new works and new audiences, and leave a legacy of commitment to the cultural vibrancy of Oakland and the East Bay.


  • Listing as a member of the Calvin Simmons Legacy Society in the concert program book
  • Invitation to the annual Thank You event for Calvin Simmons Legacy Society members
  • Invitation to a reception at Michael Morgan’s private studio, exclusive to Calvin Simmons Legacy Society Members and Gold Baton Circle and higher donors.
  • Special invitations and opportunities whenever they come up!

To let us know about your estate plans or to learn more about leaving a legacy of support, call Oakland Symphony at 510-444-0801. For related paperwork, please use Oakland Symphony, 1440 Broadway Suite 405, Oakland, CA 94612.