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Trey Devey Biography


Trey Devey was named President of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in January 2009. Devey, 45, is also the President of the Cincinnati May Festival, a dual role established in the 1960s.

Devey is charged with operating the $51 million organization in a sustainable manner, bringing value to the Greater Cincinnati community. He provides visionary leadership to the complex arts organization and works in close collaboration with the CSO Board of Directors and artistic and musician leadership.

As CSO President, Devey has led the organization in a period of great transition and success that has seen significant growth in contributions and concert attendance. Under Devey’s leadership, the CSO has implemented and maintained a significant degree of financial discipline, finishing eight consecutive fiscal years with balanced budget operations. During this time the budget of the CSO grew from $44.3 million to $60.9 million and the endowment increased from $57 million as of January 1, 2009 to over $143 million as of August 31, 2016. In addition to annual fund support, the Orchestra has raised over $215 million during this time period for endowment, debt elimination, special projects and capital needs.

The improved financial strength of the organization and strength of relationship between musicians, Board and staff has allowed the CSO and Pops to maintain the highest artistic standards and its place as one of only 15 52-week American orchestras. Last year the Orchestra began the process of restoring the musician complement.

Devey has also led the organization through artistic leadership transitions. The Orchestra selected John Morris Russell to succeed the late Erich Kunzel as Cincinnati Pops Conductor in 2010, and named Louis Langrée to succeed Paavo Järvi as CSO Music Director in 2013. The May Festival announced Juanjo Mena as its new Principal Conductor in 2016. During the CSO’s two-year transition in artistic leadership, the Orchestra successfully engaged luminaries of the music world – Lang Lang, Philip Glass, the late Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Jennifer Higdon and Branford Marsalis – as creative directors to offer artistic guidance.

During this period, the Orchestra advanced its role as a place of experimentation through several high profile initiatives. The organization launched its wildly popular and innovative LUMENOCITY concerts, began a groundbreaking collaboration with the MusicNOW Festival, developed the acclaimed three-season Pelléas Trilogy and commissioned and presented 31 world premieres.

The CSO and Pops also expanded its role as Cincinnati’s cultural ambassador. The Orchestra developed its own Fanfare Cincinnati recording label, releasing eleven recordings to date, increased its digital presence through downloads, streaming and a new online video series, and maintained a robust national radio broadcast presence. The CSO, Pops and May Festival undertook six national and international tours during this period with two additional tours scheduled in Asia and Europe in 2017.

Throughout, the Orchestra deepened its commitment to the greater Cincinnati region. The Orchestra engaged the community through the acclaimed One City, One Symphony initiative, increased participation in its community engagement and education programs by 71% and expanded youth orchestra offerings with the addition of the CSYO Concert Orchestra. Diversity and inclusion has been a top priority for the Orchestra through the establishment of the CSO/CCM Diversity Fellowship Program funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the continued growth of the Classical Roots initiative. Also, under Mr. Devey’s leadership, the CSO’s MEMI subsidiary took over management of Cincinnati’s historic Taft Theatre and completed a $3.2 million renovation project in 2011. MEMI manages concert venues and events in the through the tristate region.

Since 2013, the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Cincinnati Pops have earned nine prestigious community honors for its innovative programming, commitment to diversity, service to community and organizational strength.

Devey currently serves on the boards of the Ohio Citizens for the Arts, CCMpower and Music Hall Revitalization Company, ex-officio and is a member of the CCM Dean’s Advisory Council.

A former consultant with The Boston Consulting Group and past president and executive director of the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, the Alabama Symphony Orchestra and the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra, Devey also worked in the Development departments of the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra and Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra and in the Production department at Lake Forest Symphony Orchestra. As an American Symphony Orchestra League Orchestra Management Fellow, he completed assignments at the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra and American Composers Orchestra.

Devey holds an MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania where he achieved the highest honor as a Palmer Scholar, graduating in the top five percent of his class. He graduated summa cum laude from Northern Illinois University with a Bachelor of Music and was given the Outstanding Alumni Award in 2003.