It was at the Phil in Naples when I first realized I loved the ballet. That was the time, nineteen years ago, when I had to pay my youngest son, Michael, who was then fifteen, $10 to come with me and an extra $10 to wear a tie. My hope that he would at least love the experience turned out to be fulfilled. The recent brilliant performance of Blood, Sweat and Tears adds to the relatively short list of Philharmonic events I have been privileged to experience.
After a well orchestrated fundraising campaign headed by Myra Daniels, the Phil opened 95% debt-free in 1989, and has grown each season since. Unlike most other art centers, The Phil features both the performing and the visual arts and is also home to a resident orchestra employing 49 resident musicians led by music director Jorge Mester.The Phil is host to more than 400events year round, including adult education programs, summer children’s workshops, and presentations. “In addition to the 1,425-seat main hall and a 282-seat black box theater, the Phil has four museum-quality art galleries, which showcase traveling and exclusive exhibition,” states the web page, www.thephil.org. “The Phil has 420 full and part-time employees, including a full-time administrative staff of 80, as well as several hundred volunteers.”
Marco Island’s art scene reverberates with and parallels The Phil’s observations that “the arts serve many purposes. They can be entertaining and they can be enlightening. They can be educational and they can be fun. The arts help to nurture and grow the community.”
The Philharmonic Center for the Arts is a non-profit organization. The mission of The Phil is “to enlighten, educate and entertain people of all ages and backgrounds in Southwest Florida by presenting the very best of the visual and performing arts.”
Three Dog Night, award winning band of the ‘70s will be performing one night only July 31. To contact the Philharmonic Center for the Arts call 239-597-1900. The Phil is located at 5833 Pelican bay Blvd in N. Naples west of 41.