Obituary: former Florida West Coast Symphony music director Paul Wolfe, 90

Posted on: September 19, 2016

“During his more than three decades as artistic director and conductor of the Florida West Coast Symphony, Paul Wolfe invited audiences to share his passion for music while ensuring that thousands of students received a meaningful introduction into the world of the classics,” writes Jay Handelman in Thursday’s (9/15) Sarasota Herald-Tribune. “During his 34-year tenure, Wolfe led … the organization now known as the Sarasota Orchestra, performed in what is now the Sarasota String Quartet, co-founded the Sarasota Music Festival and expanded and enthusiastically conducted the organization’s vibrant youth orchestra. Wolfe, who retired from the orchestra in 1996 and from his 40-year run as leader of the music festival a decade, later, died Tuesday at the age of 90.” Born in New York City, Wolfe began playing violin at four, entered the High School of Music and Art at twelve, and became the school orchestra’s concertmaster at thirteen. Following studies in math and economics at Queens College, he served as concertmaster of the Air Force Band in Washington, then earned a business degree and a master’s in music from Columbia University. He and his wife, Doris, he moved to Sarasota in 1961. Survivors include his wife, two daughters, a granddaughter, and two great-grandchildren. 

Posted September 19, 2016