National Philharmonic’s 2019-20 season will go on, with new leadership

Posted on: August 12, 2019

“On Saturday afternoon, the National Philharmonic’s board voted unanimously for a transition plan that will allow it to complete its 2019-20 season and stay open for the coming years,” writes Rebecca Tan in Sunday’s (8/11) Washington Post. “The plan … calls for the exit of the orchestra’s top leadership…. Jim Kelly, a violinist with the orchestra who is also the co-owner of Potter Violins in Silver Spring, will work unpaid for a year as president of the orchestra, replacing outgoing president Leanne Ferfolia, who will serve as a senior consultant to Kelly through the end of the calendar year. Former board member Harris Miller will ascend to board chair, replacing Todd Eskelsen…. The National Philharmonic announced in July that it had run out of money, prompting an outcry from both musicians and audience members. Ferfolia undertook an emergency fundraising campaign, successfully crowdsourcing $210,000…. Kelly launched an independent fundraising campaign, garnering more than $300,000 in donations…. He received backing from [the National Philharmonic Players’ Committee] as well as the National Philharmonic’s founder and music director, Piotr Gajewski; the artistic director of the National Philharmonic Chorale, Stanley Engebretson; and several board members…. Gajewski … anticipates the coming season to be … ‘a rebirth.’ ”

Posted August 12, 2019

In photo: Piotr Gajewski conducts the National Philharmonic. Photo by Joshua Cogan