You know, I’m of mixed emotions. I know our state is in difficulty. I know that the government either has to raise taxes or cut spending. I fully understand all the difficulties that everyone across the board is having as it comes to funding. And in the long run I believe everyone will do whatever they have to do, negotiating themselves into it I hope, and that we’ll squeeze by until the economy starts to turn around again, if it does.

Syracuse Symphony OrchestraThat’s why it’s so sad realizing that it’s possible the Syracuse Symphony might be on its last leg. The state is looking to cut funding to the symphony, and I really can’t blame them, even though I love the symphony. The issue is that it’s hard to take a look at culture and entertainment and put it on the same level as education and health care.

I love the symphony. I think the first time I ever went was to a production of The Messiah with a girlfriend of mine. Then it modulated (musical term) into all sorts of productions. My favorites have always been piano concertos, and I saw my favorite Andre Watts, perform Rachmaninoff’s 2nd Piano Concerto there and had a chance to meet him that I messed up; heck! I’ve seen a ton of piano concertos, including Prokofieff’s 3nd, which has a very artistic and showy presentation in the 3rd movement if you get the right pianist, which I did.

I’ve seen straight up classical pieces, orchestra and vocal, other types of concertos including Beethoven’s Violin Concerto, and many modern works of art; I’ve hated most of those. lol I’ve also gone to quite a few operas. The first opera I ever went to had the lady to the left, Agnes Baltsa, singing the lead in Carmen. I had a box seat for that one, and man, did I feel like royalty. I’ve always said I wanted to get around to trying to purchase a box seat for a season one of these days, but those things don’t come up all that often and, if things go as they might, I may never have the opportunity to ever get it.

The Syracuse Symphony Orchestra is one of the highest rated in the world. We’ve had top quality conductors, of which Daniel Hege is the latest. If you don’t know the name, you might have heard about a flash mob that popped up at Carousel last year; he led the group in a performance of Hallelujah near the carousel that made a major splash on Twitter. What, you didn’t see it? See below:

Wasn’t that fun? Anyway, look at the types of shows still available this year. On the weekend of March 5th there’s the performance of Liszt’s 2nd Piano Concerto & Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony, the 6th. You have Bach’s Monumental Mass the weekend of April 15th (I love that stuff, but my wife won’t go so I’ll be missing that). And you’ve got internationally known cellist Yo-Yo Ma doing Dvorak’s Cello Concerto on April 27th. You just don’t get this kind of quality everywhere, and we have it right here in central New York.

It would be a crime to lose the symphony, which this year is celebrating its golden anniversary; that’s 50 years folks! Now you can help. They’re doing fund raising to try to keep it going, and you can access the link here. Help to spread the word if you can, and give if you care.

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