Valley Symphony Orchestra Appoints David Lobel as New Executive Director - Valley Symphony Orchestra

Valley Symphony Orchestra Appoints David Lobel as New Executive Director

(McAllen, TX- January 16, 2024) The Board of Directors of the Valley Symphony Orchestra (VSO) has announced the hiring of performing arts and entertainment industry veteran David Lobel to the position of Executive Director, beginning January 1, 2024. Lobel has been serving as the Interim Executive Director of the VSO since August 2023 following the departure of Katy Coy, who relocated to the midwest to become the CEO of the Jazz Arts Group in Columbus, Ohio. 

“As he has proven during the transition, David is the perfect person to lead the VSO through our current 72nd season and to chart a course through our 75th anniversary and beyond,” says Dr. Nina Torkelson, President of the Board of Directors. “He is a proven leader in the music and arts community, and we are fortunate to have him working with us.” Maestro Peter Dabrowski adds “I am very excited to welcome Mr. Lobel as the new Executive Director. His extensive expertise as a producer has already made a significant impact on this season’s concerts, and his talents and involvement in the Rio Grande Valley community will enhance the Orchestra’s visibility and ensure its continued success.” 

David Lobel comes to the VSO with over 20 years of cultural arts management in a variety of roles for both the commercial and nonprofit sectors, most recently with the Hi, How Are You Project, an Austin-based mental health awareness organization where he oversaw day-to-day activities of the company and produced all of their large scale annual concerts, events and initiatives. David has also led his own boutique music management and consulting agency, Lobel Arts, for the last fifteen years, specializing in brand strategy, live event development and production, client advocacy, and creative planning.

“My accumulated experience as both an entrepreneur and a longtime consultant to nonprofits has led me to this amazing opportunity with the Valley Symphony Orchestra,” says Lobel. “I am thrilled to work with the incredible musicians, Maestro Dabrowski, the Board of Directors, and multiple stakeholders and partners to expand the VSO’s imprint across the Rio Grande Valley and beyond. With the symphony’s 75th anniversary just around the corner, magnified by the explosive growth of the entire region, my excitement to serve the community is tremendous!”

The Valley Symphony Orchestra’s 2023-2024 season continues with Music of Fantasia on February 23 at the McAllen Performing Arts Center followed by their annual Bravo! VSO fundraising gala on March 1 at the McAllen Convention Center, with several more concerts throughout the Spring. More information and tickets for all events are available at


David Lobel brings 20+ years of expertise in the music, performing arts, and nonprofit industries. Originally from Long Island, New York, David moved to Austin in 1996 to attend the University of Texas and graduated with honors in 1999. Soon after, he began touring North America as a saxophonist, most notably as a co-founder of the iconic Austin-based Latin orchestra Grupo Fantasma. He transitioned to be their full time manager in 2007 and established Lobel Arts the same year. During his tenure and as Executive Producer of the El Existential album, the band won a Grammy for ‘Best Latin Rock, Alternative, or Urban Album’ and made numerous appearances backing up legendary artists such as Prince, Fania All-Stars pianist Larry Harlow, GZA of Wu-Tang Clan, Spoon, and many others.

David has worked or consulted for major and independent record labels and distributors, music business management firms, and theater arts collectives. He has a range of experience in tour booking, tour management, merchandising, music licensing, grant writing, brand strategy, public relations, curation, and commissioning. More recently, he has specialized in concert and event production, including multi-year projects by composer and bandleader Graham Reynolds (The Sound of Science, MXTX, Pancho Villa from a Safe Distance, Insectum) and the Hi, How Are You Project – a mental health awareness organization inspired by the late, great songwriter and visual artist Daniel Johnston.