After years of planning and searching for an appropriate site, the Kimmel Center, Inc. began to take shape in 1996 when two projects came together: the Philadelphia Orchestra's ongoing plan to build a new home for itself, and a plan of then Mayor Edward G. Rendell to provide a much-needed venue for some of Philadelphia's most prominent performing arts companies and for touring presentations. With the generous consent of the Orchestra, which had acquired a property at Broad and Spruce Streets, the two plans were merged under the supervision and management of a new organization, the Regional Performing Arts Center (RPAC).
Completed in 2001 the Kimmel Center, Inc.'s facilities designed by architect, Rafael Viñoly, acoustician Russell Johnson of ARTEC Consultants, Inc. and Russell Pilbrow of Theater Consultants host eight resident companies. Verizon Hall is home to The Philadelphia Orchestra and to Peter Nero and the Philly Pops®. The Perelman Theater is home to PHILADANCO, The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society and American Theater Arts for Youth.
As a facility for the independent International Youth Orchestra Study Group which rents space for its summer camp, the center not only provides adequate training space for its attending students, but also provides performing spaces for the public concerts that are an integral part of the camp’s curriculum.
Located on Broad Street on the Avenue of the Arts in the heart of Philadelphia’s center city, the Kimmel Center is easily reached by all forms of public transportation. This easily accessible location makes daily commuting for IYOSG, Inc.’s local students literally steps away from their classes.