Since it began in 1991, Eugene’s Shedd Institute has become a major champion of American music in the Pacific Northwest. It was founded as the Oregon Festival of American Music (OFAM), a summer orchestral pops festival devoted to American classical music. In 1993 it became a resident company of the Hult Center, and in 1995 opened its own community music center.
In 1997, OFAM began programming year round, with the beginning of two new performance initiatives, the American Symphonia and Emerald City Jazz Kings. In 2002 the organization found a physical home in downtown Eugene’s First Baptist Church, and changed its name to the John G. Shedd Institute; the name is that of an early 20th-century Chicago philanthropist and great-grandfather of Festival co-founder Ginevra Reed Ralph.
Currently the Shedd’s performance division manages six concert series: the Oregon Festival of American Music, the Emerald City Jazz Kings, Now Hear This Presenting Series, the American Symphonia, the Magical Moombah, Shedd Presents, and Jazz Party at the Shedd. Its current facility includes two formal concert halls, a multi-purpose Great Hall, two dance studios, a library, and more than 30 other spaces for community meetings, classes, and rehearsals.
John G. Shedd Institute for the Arts Information
- Public Transportation: Fair (accessible by a number of public bus routes)
- Handicapped Accessibility: Good
- Performances/Programs: Approximately 100 performances annually
- Ticket Prices: Vary widely ($7-70) depending on event and seating. Discounts available for students and seniors at select performances.