Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra breaks ground on new $33 million facility

MADISON, Wis. — Construction teams broke ground Monday morning on a new building for the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra.

The construction is taking place on part of E. Washington Ave. in downtown Madison, across from the Metro transit hub.

The organization, which was founded in 1966, will host state-of-the-art rehearsal spaces in the new building, as well as performances and individual instruction for kids of all backgrounds. It also gives those programs a home under one roof after spending the past two years at satellite sites across the city.

More than 500 musicians from across southern Wisconsin participate in the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra’s programs.

Monday morning’s groundbreaking ceremony was kicked off with young musicians participating in a brass quintet set, and was followed by a speech from the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra’s Bridget Fraiser, who quoted a poem by William Butler Gates.

The $33 million project was made possible in part by donations from Pleasant Rowland and Jerry Frautschi. Construction should be finished sometime in 2023.