The Orchestra Returns to Syracuse

Posted: October 20, 2011 by jerkmag in VAULT -- archives
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Earlier this year, the 50-year-old Syracuse Symphony declared bankruptcy and performed for the final time, leaving its musicians without a job and the city without an orchestra. This fall, the Syracuse Philharmonic Society is attempting to take its place. However, this doesn’t do much for the musicians who lost their jobs from the Syracuse Symphony closing. For the next five years, the Syracuse Philharmonic cannot guarantee full-time employment, causing many musicians to leave Syracuse for opportunities elsewhere. Musicians are also less than thrilled about the plans for the new musical group and the direction it’s planning to take.

According to the Post-Standard, some suggestions offered for the new Philharmonic Society include hosting a gospel concert, a Valentine’s Day dance, or inviting other city orchestras to come play in Syracuse.

The bankruptcy did not stop the symphony’s members from continuing their music over the summer, performing under the name Symphony Syracuse. The Syracuse Philharmonic is trying to come to an agreement with the union in order to hire a full orchestra, but so far have failed.

While the loss of the SSO is sad for Syracuse, some people are acting like the rebirth of the Syracuse orchestra scene in the Syracuse Philharmonic is a tragedy. In fact, shouldn’t musicians and music lovers be celebrating the return of orchestra music to the city? Yes, it’s not the same orchestra, but let’s try to embrace change, not reject it. And remember that this is only Syracuse–we’re not talking about the fate of the New York Philharmonic here. If the city is getting the opportunity to have an orchestra back in our midst, I think we should take it.

-Diana Pearl

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