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St. Louis Symphony Orchestra to give free tickets to St. Louis County book lovers

St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
Conductor Stephane Deneve leads the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra at Powell Hall.

The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra will provide free tickets to St. Louis County book lovers.

In a pilot program that SLSO officials say could expand beyond St. Louis County, the orchestra will give 3,000 tickets to county library card holders who have never experienced an orchestra performance.

“We are very excited about the prospect of introducing more new people to the symphony,” said Unitey Kull, the orchestra’s chief marketing and communications officer. “We are inspired by other such partnerships around the country, it was one of our musicians that brought that to our attention.”

Librarygoers can pick up ticket vouchers from any county branch. After picking up vouchers, library patrons can redeem them for tickets through the symphony’s box office. Symphony and library officials say they’re making classical music more accessible.

“Music brings people together. This is just a way to encourage people to go out and check out either a traditional concert or a family concert — which are very fun,” library Director and CEO Kristen Sorth said.

Library card holders can receive two tickets to a classical concert or four tickets to the orchestra’s family concert in March.

“We love that the library provides so many wonderful services already, why not also access to music,” Kull said. “We’d love for you to try it, see if you like it, and come back if you do.”

Tickets to the symphony are now among a list of extras at the library. Cardholders can check out musical instruments and tools and consult genealogy records and other resources. Sorth said ensuring that it is a “Library of Things” is another way to make entertainment more accessible.

“We have puzzles, tabletop games, and we also have things like blood pressure kits. So it’s practical, and then it’s pickleball,” Sorth said.

Lauren Brennecke is a senior studying journalism and media studies at Webster University. She is a Fall '23 Newsroom Intern at St. Louis Public Radio.