The San Jose Symphony Orchestra was a symphony orchestra performing in San Jose, California. It performed in the Civic Auditorium through 1971, and the Center for the Performing Arts afterwards until its suspension and dissolution. In October 2001, the San Jose Symphony closed its doors in a bid to restructure. But when, more than a year later, the organization was unable to recover San Jose Symphony declared Chapter 7 bankruptcy and was dissolved.
Symphony Silicon Valley, an orchestra under new management but including many of the same musicians, was created in 2002 and succeeded the San Jose Symphony as the professional symphony orchestra of San Jose.
A group calling itself the San Jose Symphony first performed in 1879, but its existence was scattered and irregular until a formal symphony association was formed in 1937. A more regularly organized group, at first calling itself the San Jose Civic Orchestra, began playing that year and, except for a suspension during World War II, continued until 2001. At first it was a volunteer group playing only one or two concerts a year. Following the war, the musicians were paid, but 3 concerts a year was normal until the mid-1960s, after which the number began to rise. The 1975-76 season, a bicentennial special featuring appearances by Alan Hovhaness, Carlos Chavez, Aaron Copland, Virgil Thomson, and Lou Harrison conducting their own works, was a landmark on the orchestra's path to full-time professional status.