While in its early years, the Rochester Symphony Orchestra grew and matured under several conductors. Among them were Frederick Johnson, Richard Goldsworthy, Alonzo Seaboldt, and Edward Steinhart.
However in 1978, the organization took a major step forward by naming James Fenwick Hohmeyer as their music director and conductor. Because of his energetic leadership, vast musical knowledge, and creative programming, the orchestra advanced. While under his direction, Hohmeyer made it so that the Rochester Symphony Orchestra was able to pick from leading candidates to fill his shoes. Consequently, the orchestra selected Maestro Glenn Klassen. The Rochester Symphony Orchestra also rose to a distinguished status in 2014 when Zeljko Milicevic became the new music director and conductor.
Each season the Rochester Symphony Orchestra offers subscription concerts featuring noted guest artists and soloists. In addition, the orchestra conducts educational outreach programs in the greater Rochester area, including its acclaimed annual Young Artist Competition.