Updated 04/07/2011 05:53 AM
SSO declares bankruptcy
After almost 50 seasons, the Syracuse Symphony is no longer. The SSO's board of directors, faced with mounting financial challenges, has voted to dissolve the organization and enter bankruptcy. YNN's Bill Carey says there is still hope that though the symphony may be gone, it is not dead.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Since he was a young boy, this has been Jeremy Mastrangelo's life. The life of a musician.
In recent years, he's served as associate concertmaster for the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, an orchestra that has now been put out of business.
"It's like having a death in the family, where you go through this grieving process," Mastrangelo said.
Mastrangelo represented fellow musicians as a member of the SSO's board of directors. He saw the economic strain growing as the 50th season approached. He and fellow musicians were among the first to feel its sting.
"We were told, the whole thing hinges on the musicians. The viability for the 50th season hinges on the musicians giving back this much. If you look at the numbers projected out through this year, the one group that hit its projected number was, of course, the musicians, because we gave back what was asked of us," Mastrangelo said.
Mastrangelo wonders whether strategic planning, in better economic times, may have helped to head off this year's disaster.
Mastrangelo said, "Anybody running a business, when things are going well, that's not when you sit back. That's when you're looking ahead and saying, hey, how do we invest in the future and insure that we continue success."
There is talk, now, of an effort to revive the SSO. A new plan to give new life to the orchestra.
"And when that plan is devised is the only uncertainty. This community has benefited from the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra for 50 years. They're a part of the fabric of our cultural life and our life in general," said Deputy Onondaga County Executive William Fisher.
But Jeremy Mastrangelo and fellow musicians wonder what form any new orchestra might take.
"You know, anything is possible. What you're talking about then, though, is no longer a symphony orchestra," Mastrangelo said.
He and other members of the SSO now wait to see what form their future life in music will take.
Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney and others are actively seeking a formula that might allow a planned SSO concert with Yo Yo Ma to be held, as scheduled, in May. The search is underway for dollars to pay for the event, as well as a way to hold an event with an orchestra that, on paper, no longer exists.