Bravo and welcome back. The Lake Washington Symphony Orchestra performed its inaugural concert Sunday nearly three years after the implosion of the Bellevue Philharmonic Orchestra.
An Eastside treasure returned in robust form, again under the direction of Michael Miropolsky. The music of Johann Strauss, Hugo Alfven, Bizet and Rimsky-Korsakov delighted the audience at the Lake Washington High School Performing Arts Center.
Kirkland Mayor Amy Walen welcomed the audience and shared in the celebratory moment for this professional orchestra finding new life as a musician-run organization. Board member and violinist Martha Garrett also greeted the classical music fans and community members who had helped revive an Eastside symphony orchestra.
Bellevue Philharmonic Orchestra’s demise was a combination of economic stress, debt and organizational tensions. The closure in 2011 ended a 43-year run.
The new symphony had prepared for Sunday’s debut with intense rehearsals, and epic behind-the-scenes efforts to raise money and look ahead. Fundraising to cover the next concert – renting the hall, renting the music and paying musicians and conductor – all loom ahead.
In that spirit, the orchestra extends an invitation to the “Symphony of Gardens,” a tour with live music of five featured gardens in Clyde Hill, Medina, Hunts Point and Kirkland. Check for updated information about the June 29 event at the symphony website.
The music on Sunday had the vigor and energy of talented, professional musicians under the baton of a gifted, personable conductor. A fresh start for a valued Eastside institution.