Los Angeles, October 1, 2019 – Los Angeles Philharmonic Board Chair Thomas L. Beckmen announced today, on behalf of the Board of Directors and Music & Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel, that Chad Smith has been appointed Chief Executive Officer, David C. Bohnett Chief Executive Officer Chair, of the Association, to begin immediately.
Chad Smith currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer for the Los Angeles Philharmonic where he is presently responsible for the artistic oversight and coordination of the orchestra’s programming, as well as the organization’s marketing, communications and public relations, production, orchestra operations, media, and learning initiatives. Smith’s tenure with the orchestra has been defined by his close relationships with Music & Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel and Conductor Laureate Esa-Pekka Salonen; groundbreaking artistic initiatives including the launch of new orchestral series, major multi-disciplinary projects and dozens of festivals; and an unparalleled commitment to composers and the music of today. He has also overseen the launch of many of the organization’s defining learning programs, including YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles), a program which has provided daily after-school music training to thousands of children in several of L.A.’s underserved communities.
"Chad Smith has done years of brilliant work in advancing the LA Phil in every aspect of its mission, from planning and commissioning our extraordinary presentations of new music, to heightening the orchestra’s profile at the Hollywood Bowl, to overseeing our crucial educational programs and helping to launch YOLA,” said Board Chair Thomas L. Beckmen. “He enjoys the complete confidence and support of everyone in this organization. The Board enthusiastically welcomes him as the LA Phil’s new CEO and looks forward to many great achievements to come.”
“I am very happy, together with the Board, to welcome Chad Smith as the next CEO of the LA Phil,” added Gustavo Dudamel, Music & Artistic Director. “I've known him since I first arrived in LA a decade ago, and he's always been an exceptional colleague, partner and friend. We share the same vision of excellence for the future of our institution, and I have complete faith that he will help me deliver on our immense dreams and responsibilities to the next generation - artistically, educationally and musically.”
“The LA Phil has been my creative home for the last 17 years, and I am honored to be stepping into this role,” said Chad Smith. “Supporting the expansive vision of Gustavo and his deeply held commitment to serving the whole of the LA community has never been more important, and I continue to strive to support that work. As we focus on ensuring that our great orchestra thrives, as we continue to grow our YOLA program, and as we imagine new ways our programming can connect to existing audiences while inviting in new listeners, I could not be more excited about beginning my new role.”
Smith began his career in 2000 at the New World Symphony, working closely with conductor Michael Tilson Thomas. He first joined the LA Phil in 2002, when he was responsible for planning the orchestra’s Green Umbrella new music series, as well as the classical programming at the Hollywood Bowl. After briefly serving as the New York Philharmonic’s head artistic planner, in 2006 Smith returned to the LA Phil in the expanded role of Vice President of Artistic Planning, a position he held until being named Chief Operating Officer in 2015.
A trustee of the New England Conservatory, Smith also serves on the advisory board of the Music Academy of the West and is a member of the Executive Committee for the Avery Fisher Artist Program. Currently Artistic Director of the Ojai Music Festival, his first planned festival will be in the summer of 2020. A native of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, Smith earned a B.A. in European history from Tufts University, as well as B.M. and M.M. degrees in vocal performance from the New England Conservatory.
Sophie Jefferies, SJefferies@laphil.org, 213 972 3422