Aug 22, 2011 Russ Tarby Uncategorized
It was Feb. 2, in the middle of the Syracuse Symphony’s Orchestra’s unsuccessful attempt to raise $1.7 million to save its 50th anniversary season.
Our headline said it all: “SU should save SSO!”
Now, six months later, that’s exactly what’s happening.
Former SSO executive director Jeff Comanici — now an assistant dean for advancement at Syracuse University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts — plans to establish the Syracuse Philharmonic Society as part of SU’s new Center for Live Music in the 20th Century.
The center will be helmed by Patrick Jones, recently named director of SU’s Setnor School of Music. Jones arrived here from Boston University where he chaired the music education department.
SU can certainly afford the orchestral undertaking. The university is Syracuse’s wealthiest and most culturally concerned institution, boasting endowment assets worth $1,031.6 million, according to Bloomberg Businessweek.
That’s $1 billion plus $31 million!
Before it went belly up on May 10, the SSO’s annual budget is about $7 million, a mere drop in SU’s golden bucket.
Former SSO Musical Director Dan Hege, who was appointed in May 2010 as a professor of practice at SU’s College of Visual and Performing Arts, will serve as the philharmonic’s artistic manager and primary conductor.
Comanici estimates that it will take five years to get the Syracuse Phil up and running at the same speed and efficiency as the old SSO, which was considered one of the top 50 orchestras in the country.
As did the SSO, the Syracuse Phil will perform most of its concerts at the Mulroy Civic Center, downtown at 411 Montgomery St. A handful of pops concerts will be staged at the Landmark Theatre, also downtown at 362 S. Salina St.
In the spring of 2010, the foundation was laid for the Syracuse Phil when SU and the SSO expanded their partnership, an agreement which included the Hege appointment.
At that time, SU Chancellor Nancy Cantor praised the SSO as “an absolute gem, one of the key cultural anchors of Syracuse and Central New York.”
Now Cantor has backed up her words with action by setting in motion a plan to resurrect a full-time symphony orchestra here.
Chicken wings and rock’n’roll go together like caviar and classical.
Seven loud and licentious local rock acts will heat up the hot sauce at the Hottest Chick N Wing Festival Friday and Saturday, Aug. 19-20, at Syracuse’s Inner Harbor. Beside the bands, the festival features hot rods and hot hogs, a Miss Wingfest competition, a wings eating contest, amusement park rides and fireworks.
While the wings start frying at 2 p.m. Friday, the bands don’t plug in until 6 p.m. when Kane takes the stage followed by Blue Machine at 7:45 p.m. and Under the Gun at 9:15 p.m.
On Saturday the music starts at 3 p.m. with Los Blancos and continues at 5:30 p.m. with Mark Doyle & The Maniacs, followed by 3-Inch Fury at 7:15 p.m. and Think Pink at 9 p.m. The fireworks should light up the sky about 10:30 p.m.
Jazz for the junior set
Jazz pianist Marcus Roberts — who celebrated his 48th birthday Aug. 7 — will lead his trio in a special performance at 10 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 25, at the Everson Museum for 120 school-aged students from social service agencies serving the city of Syracuse. The concert will be followed by an interactive art activity led by the Everson’s Education Department.
The concert is a collaborative effort between the Everson and the Skanaeateles Festival.
“Jazz blends European elements with both African music and musical traditions of the American South,” said Susan Mark, Skaneateles Festival executive director. “We’re eager to have Syracuse students make contact with professional jazz musicians who are positive and inspiring role models.”
The Marcus Roberts Trio features drummer Jason Marsalis and bassist Rodney Jordan.
University Sheraton renovating
After having notched the longest-running weekly gig in all of CNY with their Wednesday happy hours at the University Sheraton Regatta Room, Frenay & Lenin have been forced to take a break from their Hump Day routine. The Sheraton’s undergoing renovations, so the Sammy-winning duo will chill until the carpenters clear out, time frame as yet undetermined…
Meanwhile, you can catch Gary and Arty from 4 to 8 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 21, at Borio’s on Lakeshore Road in Cicero; 699-2249; and at 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 27, at The Retreat, at the corner of Vine and First streets, in Liverpool; 457-6358.