The Nashville Symphony and Video of the Flood of 2010
As a former member of the Nashville Symphony I have been watching with interest for coverage on the major flood this past week. When I started seeing photos it was easy to see that the damage is quite extensive; it was for me especially startling to see photos of the damage inside the Opryland Hotel which was a favorite place to visit and an occasional venue for performances. In terms of major music venues two important venues today are the new Schermerhorn Symphony Center and also the Ryman Auditorium, the original home of the Grand Ole Opry. I did not perform in the Ryman that many times as it is a smaller venue but I remember those times fondly; it was actually a very nice venue for Classical music. The Schermerhorn Symphony Center is a new venue and was not built before I left the symphony. In short, while the [UPDATED] Ryman was not damaged [at first I thought it might have been, but it is clear that only the Grand Ole Opry House at Opryland is damaged and initial news stories were confusing] the Symphony Center will be out of commission for a good while due to flood damage.
Curious to see how things looked for the Nashville Symphony specifically I was able to find this great video on YouTube of flood damage at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center. In short, the basement was completely flooded but the hall itself remained dry.
With Schermerhorn Symphony Center damaged by the extensive downtown flooding, the Nashville Symphony has moved swiftly to find alternative venues for upcoming concerts.
The Nashville Symphony is moving temporarily back to the Tennessee Performing Arts Center for some large concerts, which is where they performed when I was in the group. More centrally downtown and on higher ground, I am sure it remains a workable venue for Classical music. A press release goes into more detail.
Meanwhile, the Nashville Symphony is also pleased to announce that most of the remaining concerts for its 2009/10 season have already been rescheduled to take place at alternative venues while the Schermerhorn undergoes repairs. The Symphony’s much-anticipated presentation of the Los Angeles Philharmonic (May 15 at 8 p.m.) will take place in TPAC’s Andrew Jackson Hall, as will the Nashville Symphony’s own performances of Bartók’s stunning Bluebeard’s Castle (May 20 at 7 p.m., May 21-22 at 8 p.m.), complete with 14-foot Dale Chihuly sculptures onstage. Current ticket holders will be reseated at TPAC by the Symphony’s box office staff. Remaining tickets for these events will be on sale in the coming days. Everyone is encouraged to check NashvilleSymphony.org regularly for up-to-the-minute information.
This flood will disrupt the lives of many musicians and arts organizations for quite a while. If you want to support the symphony specifically in this time of need, on the main page of their website they currently have the following information on how to help support the Nashville Symphony.
The Nashville Symphony is enormously grateful for the generous support of individuals during this time of need. If you would like to make a donation in support of the Nashville Symphony, you may do so by mailing a check to the Nashville Symphony or making a pledge via email.
Their Facebook page is another great place to check for more information. This is certainly a good time to at the least become a fan of the Nashville Symphony. Finally, to support musicians in general, check the website of AFM Local 257 for more; the AFM has set up a flood relief fund of their own.
UPDATE: Text updated relating to the Opry House and Ryman.
UPDATE 2: More on damage to the Opry House at Opryland.