Louisville Orchestra gets Oscar worthy gift - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

Louisville Orchestra gets Oscar worthy gift

One of the biggest names in music and film to town to lead the Louisville Orchestra Saturday night. One of the biggest names in music and film to town to lead the Louisville Orchestra Saturday night.
The Louisville Orchestra The Louisville Orchestra
Williams appearance has already generated subscription renewals and is creating plenty of excitement about what's ahead for the Louisville Orchestra. Williams appearance has already generated subscription renewals and is creating plenty of excitement about what's ahead for the Louisville Orchestra.
Bob Bernhardt Bob Bernhardt

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Orchestras in cities across the U.S. have had economic ups and downs in recent years and thankfully, the Louisville Orchestra is among those recovering financially. Now, a big gift has the music company even more excited about it's future. 

It's an event that sold out so fast, a lot of people in Louisville didn't even know it was happening and it's bringing one of the biggest names in music and film to town to lead the Louisville Orchestra Saturday night.

It's a classic, but for one moment imagine the thriller movie Jaws without the music that helped make it famous. "Those two notes," smiled Louisville Principal Pops Conductor Bob Bernhardt, "dah duh," he sang, "Everybody knows it!"

And what about the musical score to E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial? It's the brilliance of five time Academy Award winning composer John Williams, nominated for 48 Oscars in all. From the Star Wars series to Indiana Jones, Jurassic Park to Close Encounters of the Third Kind and Schindler's List, it's music magic that makes movies come alive.

Thanks to a benefit concert years ago in Tucson, Arizona a friendship was forged. "He's a really important person in my life in terms of a mentor and a friend," said Bernhardt, "He's very kind and very generous." So generous, Williams has appeared around the country at times for various orchestras recovering from the economic fallout of 2008 much like the Louisville Orchestra.

"A couple of years ago," Bernhardt said, "We had a year with no music here which was really hard for all of us."

With a new Executive Director and a new Music Director as well as an enthusiastic Board of Directors, Bernhardt thought this was the time to ask his good friend for a favor.

Bernhardt told us how the idea began, "To fill Whitney Hall to the rafters and just have an incredibly thrilling event with our Louisville Orchestra," he said. Williams didn't hesitate to help his friend. He will conduct the Louisville Orchestra this Saturday playing his music. Subscribers got first dibs on tickets.

Williams appearance has already generated subscription renewals and is creating plenty of excitement about what's ahead for the Louisville Orchestra. 

Copyright 2014 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.

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