October 14, 2014

The Annapolis Symphony Orchestra is pleased to announce that Elizabeth Richebourg Rea has made a long-term commitment to the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra in honor of her father, Philip Richebourg, Co-founder and first Board President.

Philip Richebourg played a key role in the formative years of the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra.  First Board President in 1967 and re-elected to seven consecutive terms as President, Richebourg’s leadership and business acumen helped establish ASO’s firm foundation for future growth. When Kenneth Page, ASO’s first Music Director, died suddenly at the age of 39, it was Philip Richebourg who brought in the legendary Leon Fleisher.  Fleisher continued as Music Director for the next thirteen years, bringing to Annapolis talented guest musicians such as Isaac Stern, Eugene Istomin, Andre Watts, Charlie Byrd.

In tribute to Richebourg’s legacy, daughter Elizabeth Rea’s generous gift will underwrite and rename the Music Director’s Chair as The Philip Richebourg Chair.  “The Annapolis Symphony Orchestra has soared to the heights my father dreamed would one day come true,” says Ms. Rea. “I can think of no greater legacy than naming the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra Music Director’s Chair after my father, Philip Richebourg.”

"It is a true honor to have the ASO Music Director's Chair named after Philip Richebourg, someone so instrumental during the beginnings of the ASO, and someone who cared so deeply about the Annapolis community,” said ASO Music Director, Jose-Luis Novo. “I vividly remember the first time I met Mr. Richebourg during my inaugural season as music director -- you could tell he was full of pride for the ASO and all its accomplishment. With this generous gift from Ms. Rea it is now my personal goal to honor Mr. Richebourg's memory and continue to make him and his daughter Elizabeth proud!”

“A trumpet player himself, my father’s love and devotion to music included never missing an ASO performance”, says Ms. Rea.   “I wish to honor my father’s dedication and legacy to the ASO -- and in making this gift I also pay tribute to the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra, its historical journey to today’s standard of greatness, its formidable and talented musicians, and most of all the leadership role of the Music Director.”

Ms. Rea is the Honorary Chair of the ASO’s 2014-2015 Opening Night Celebration, which will take place on October 17 and 18, 2014.  Ms. Rea will be in attendance for the gala reception before the concert as well as in the newly renovated Concert Hall for the performance of “Opening Night Fireworks.”

 “With this tribute to her father’s years of dedication and service, Ms. Rea continues her leadership giving to support The Philip Richebourg Encore Circle, established to recognize annual gifts to the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra at the level of $50,000 or higher,” says Karen Smith, Chair of the ASO Board of Trustees. “As the founding member of the Richebourg Encore Circle, Ms. Rea has challenged others to reach this level of support for our Symphony.”

A naval aviator in the US Navy Air Corps during World War II, Philip Richebourg was an instrument flight instructor; his passion for flying included piloting his own Piper Cherokee into his mid 70s.  He was founder and President of The Philip Richebourg Real Estate and Insurance Company until his retirement in 1990.  Richebourg was the longest serving member of the Annapolis Rotary, volunteering his time for more than six decades. Named The Capital’s Person of the Year in 1990, Mr. Richebourg was typically modest of his achievements.  “Serving on the boards of at least a half-dozen organizations only seems impossible in retrospect, he said. "They usually say that busy people get things done," he said. "You have to make time to do things."

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For more information, please contact Jeth Mill, ASO Executive Director, at 410-269-1132 or email to jmill@annapolissymphony.org.