Manager, Communications & Public Relations

  • Full Time
  • Chicago

Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association


Responsible for the development and implementation of local and national media relations for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Symphony Center Presents and the Negaunee Music Institute at the CSO. Provide counsel and support to the Director of Communications and Public Relations in developing long-term, institutional communications strategies for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association (CSOA). Serve as advisor to constituent groups and other departments. Generate ongoing news coverage and public awareness for CSOA-presented programs and activities through media relations, press materials, special events, new media and other outreach. Cultivate and maintain relationships with journalists and music critics with the goals of image building, general publicity, and increasing ticket sales and attendance. Advise on the creation of social media and digital content, particularly for the Experience CSO website.

Responsible for the preparation and editing of program books for SCP Chamber, CSO Chamber and other select concerts. All publications must be produced with careful attention to detail with the intention of creating publications that enhance as well as inform the audience experience in addition to providing an accurate representation of CSOA performances. These responsibilities are performed under the direction of the program book’s editorial team.



Develop, execute and oversee long-term and day-to-day communications strategies that support the full spectrum of CSOA programs, specializing in activities for Symphony Center Presents and the Negaunee Music Institute at the CSO as well as and fundraising events hosted by the Women’s Board, League and other volunteer groups. Provide publicity support for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chorus and other special projects as assigned
Promotes diversity, inclusivity, and empowerment with Communications and Public Relations team members.
In collaboration with the Communications and PR Director, contribute to the development of short- and long-term publicity plans for various CSOA activities.
Provide support to the Communications and PR Director to implement communications strategies focused on bringing greater national and international awareness to the activities of Zell Music Director Riccardo Muti.
Cull, edit and prepare materials for program books for SCP Chamber, CSO Chamber and other select concerts. Materials include program page listings, sponsorship acknowledgements, program notes, artist biographies, headshots, special features and rosters. Edit copy to ensure accuracy and for compliance with CSOA style and tone; deliver materials to the designer for layout by the deadline; and circulate drafts for review and final approvals before files are sent to the printer.
Collaborate with content strategy and editorial groups on the development of social media strategies and content creation. When needed, participate as part of social media correspondent team to provide live coverage of events.
Oversee day-to-day and long-term communications team workflow to ensure coordinated press and media relations efforts across the department and with other departments.
Work with Communications and PR Director and senior leadership in preparation for media interactions.
Identify and facilitate highly visible publicity opportunities that promote the CSO’s brand in conjunction with Chicago’s top cultural and community organizations.
Secure meaningful visibility/promotional opportunities that generate positive publicity for the CSO, Symphony Center Presents, and Negaunee Music Institute at the CSO series.
Write and edit press materials for CSO, Symphony Center Presents and Negaunee Music Institute programs.
Support the Communications and PR Director to advise CSO project managers, staff, and volunteers on publicity-related matters.
Work in tandem with the Communications and PR Director to facilitate planning and implementation for press conferences, media cultivation events, and major press announcements.
Cultivate a broad range of media contacts, including online influencers and work to refresh in-house media lists on an ongoing basis.
Develop media pitches and publicity opportunities, and secure stories in print media, radio, television, and other digital media.
Manage media relationships with Chicago area press corps and national and international music critics.  Arrange for artist interviews and other publicity opportunities.  Provide/develop appropriate press materials and background materials as required.
Oversee traditional, new and social media monitoring utilizing Meltwater in order to regularly report results of the media placements and social media engagement.
Attend CSO and SCP concerts regularly as departmental representative to greet and assist media and facilitate any other press ticketing, media and photography/videography needs.
Supervise outside consultants and interns, as needed; assist in training new staff as needed.
Performs special projects as assigned.
CSOA is an equal opportunity employer where all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment and will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, ancestry, or national or ethnic origin. We value diversity and inclusion and seek to build and maintain a community and culture that celebrates and values diverse backgrounds, identities, and perspectives. We consider equivalent combinations of experience and education for jobs, and all candidates who believe they possess equivalent experience and education are encouraged to apply.



Reports to Communications and PR Director with supervision for program book responsibilities provided by the Director of Content.
Supervises interns and outside consultants as needed.
Works closely with VPs, directors and managers, as well as Communications and PR Coordinator.
Other contacts include: music critics, journalists, editors, general public, photographers, news crews, concertgoers, CSO musicians, guest artists, artist managers and publicists, consultants, volunteers, and board and staff members from all CSO departments.


Bachelor’s degree or equivalent required; English, public relations, journalism, or communications majors preferred.
Minimum of 5 to 7 years of experience working in public relations or communications, preferably at a non-profit or performing arts organization.
Exceptional written and verbal skills; proven editing and proofreading abilities, including familiarity with AP style.
Knowledge of classical music, orchestra/arts industry and current artists required.
Strong attention to detail and ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously, often on short or changing deadlines.
Ability to work independently, managing projects from beginning through end.
Computer literacy in Microsoft Office and Teams, Office 365, email software and media database and monitoring tools necessary.


Pleasant office environment.

Instructions to Apply:

Please submit resume, cover letter, and salary expectations to HR@CSO.ORG

To apply for this job email your details to

Pay Rate/Range*: $60-70,000