Sunday Afternoons of Music to close after 33 years
After this season, Doreen Marx and Byron Krulewitch will ring down the curtain on Sunday Afternoons of Music, the series managed by the married couple that brought top classical artists to Coral Gables for 33 years.
“It’s bittersweet,” said Marx Wednesday evening shortly before heading into a meeting to inform her board. “It’s a shame but we had a hell of a run.”
The recital by mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard on May 18 will be the final event presented by the couple who work out of their home in Kendall.
Though their energy and industry in running the series would be the envy of many people decades younger, both said that the work was becoming increasingly difficult for them and they felt it was the right time to retire.
“I’m so tired and Byron is tired,” said Marx. “I’m going to be 88 and Byron is going to be 90.”
In addition to booking artists, selling tickets and doing their own publicity and grant writing, ongoing logistical issues at their venue, Gusman Concert Hall at the University of Miami, have become increasingly problematic. “Parking at the university has become a nightmare,” said Krulewitch.
Though Marx said they have made informal approaches to some entities to continue Sunday Afternoons of Music, she said she didn’t feel that there was anyone willing to take the helm and continue the series.
Marx has presented classical artists for three decades, first at Temple Beth Am in Kendall, later moving to Gusman. In addition to presenting celebrated classical artists for 33 years, the couple has also presented children’s concerts for 28 years, which they feel especially sad to have to end. ”We used to take our kids to the ‘Kinder Concerts’ at Marine Stadium when they were young,” recalls Krulewitch. “That’s what gave us the idea.”
“The reason we think those concerts were so important is you have to work on the youth and the youngsters,” added Marx. “That’s the future. The beautiful sound of a violin or a piano can mesmerize you and bring you to great music.”
She also said that they were able to continue the series for so long due to the help of many sponsors. “We couldn’t have done it without the help of some very generous people and organizations,” said Marx.
“It’s been a joyous delight and a calling for 33 years,” she said. “But there comes a time to say sayonara.”
“And,” she added “with Isabel Leonard, we’re going to go out on a high note.”
Sunday Afternoons of Music presents violinist Ray Chen in music of Mozart, Sarasate and Beethoven 4 p.m. Sunday at Gusman Concert Hall. sundaymusicals.org; 305-271-7150.
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Wed Feb 12, 2014
at 7:49 pm