In March of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States in full force, and essentially all in-person music activities came to a halt. Summer festival plans were cancelled for Addison Teng and his students, so out of necessity he quickly organized a 3-week online festival for July 2020 with the support of Chicago nonprofit Guarneri Hall.
With a successful first summer under their belts (and plenty of time for musicians during the pandemic to research the process), the moment was right to take the leap and start a nonprofit. The Fulton Music Society was incorporated in time for the first in-person Fulton Summer Music Academy in 2021. A tour to Hawai'i in November 2021 kicked off the Fulton in Residence touring program, and the professional Fulton Chamber Players launched in Spring 2022.
The name "Fulton" was inspired by the Fulton Market District in Chicago. A popular restaurant hub, Teng spent many pre-pandemic evenings with cofounders Amy Hess and Paul Hauer envisioning the nonprofit he might start someday.
Website Design: Amy Hess
Photography: Todd Rosenberg, Nuccio DiNuzzo, Jeff Schear, Hope Ostrander, and FMS
Logo Design: Small Batch Creative