After 36 years, the final curtain has come down for the Long Island Philharmonic. The Philharmonic, founded by folk singer Harry Chapin in 1979, announced in February that it will cease operations following years of financial troubles.
Alan Inkles is director of the Staller Center for the Arts at Stony Brook University, where many of the Philharmonic’s concerts were held. Inkles says that the orchestra’s closing came from its loss of funding.
"It was disappointing to see," he says. "I know they were hanging on for a couple of years, but they just lost a big grant from one of the banks, and that put them under."
The final blow came last year when Valley National Bank did not renegotiate its 2007 loan to the orchestra after it missed payments.
"And to lose an orchestra or any arts organization, whether it be in Long Island or in the city, it's sad because you know another group just can't survive," he says.
The Philharmonic held its last concert on December 31st.