New York Philharmonic Receives $5 Million Gift to Support Parks Concerts

Classic Arts News   New York Philharmonic Receives $5 Million Gift to Support Parks Concerts
Oscar S. Schafer and his wife Didi have given $5 million to The New York Philharmonic to support the orchestra's series of free summer performances, Concerts in the Parks. The gift, announced by the Philharmonic yesterday, will secure the program for five years by helping to defray rising productions costs.

Among the series' growing expenses are a giant mobile stage, major equipment rentals, transportation and trucking, a large-scale lighting and sound system, fireworks and 50-plus workers.

The series will now be known as the New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer.

The Philharmonic's Concerts in the Parks take place in the five boroughs of New York City, on Long Island and in New Jersey; the program has drawn over 14 million attendees since its inception in 1965.

"Helping to preserve [Concerts in the Parks] is an ideal way to share our love of music with others," said the Schafers in a press release. "It is our privilege to support these glorious summer concerts."

Oscar Schafer is the managing partner of O.S.S. Capital Management LP, a Wall Street hedge fund he co-founded in 2001, and recently joined the orchestra's board directors.

The 2007 Concerts in the Parks season begins on July 10 and comprises three programs and eight concerts. Performances will take place at the PNC Banks Arts Center in Holmdel, NJ; Prospect Park in Brooklyn; Central Park in Manhattan; Cunningham Park in Queens; Snug Harbor Cultural Center on Staten Island; Hecksher State Park in East Islip (Long Island); and Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx.

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