BLAKEVIEW: 30th anniversary of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra | News | Weekly gambit



September marks the 30th anniversary of one of this city’s cultural treasures: the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra. The LPO is owned and operated by its musicians and is the oldest orchestra of its kind in the United States.

The LPO has its roots in the New Orleans Symphony, which was founded in 1936 as a successor to several earlier orchestras dating back to the 1880s.

In early September 1991, the symphony came to a halt amid financial troubles – the second such closure in four years. A few weeks later, a group called the New Orleans Symphony Players Association formed with the intention of performing under the name LPO.

“Our goal is to keep great orchestral music alive in the New Orleans area,” violinist Charles Adams, orchestra spokesperson, told The Times-Picayune in a September 28, 1991 article. let’s work our asses to find out if there’s a place in this city for an orchestra. “

All but ten of the 75 members of the New Orleans Symphony joined the LPO for its debut – a sold-out performance at the Saenger Theater on November 23, 1991. The Saenger served as the orchestra’s home for its first season, but the LPO has moved to the Orpheum Theater for its second season.

Hurricane Katrina shut down the Orpheum in 2005, forcing the LPO to occur in other locations. He returned to the restored Orpheum in 2015. In 2018, the LPO made history by performing at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Led since 2005 by Music Director and Principal Conductor Carlos Miguel Prieto, the LPO plans to open its 2021-22 season at the Orpheum on November 4. During the pandemic, it also expanded its online offerings to lpomusic.com.

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