SFCR founder to receive award for contributions to the arts

By Sean Piccoli

South Florida Classical Review founder Lawrence A. Johnson will be honored next month by the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra for his “exceptional commitment and major contributions to music and the arts,” the IPO announced today. Johnson, a Chicago resident and native, will receive the orchestra’s 2013 Ruth D. And Ken M. Davee Excellence in the Arts Award.

Chicago Classical Review is one of four online journals of arts culture and criticism that Johnson has launched since 2008. He previously covered classical music as a Chicago-based freelance writer, and then as a staff critic at successive daily newspapers in southeastern Florida, the Sun-Sentinel and the Miami Herald.

His first web publication, South Florida Classical Review, debuted in 2008 after Johnson joined a mass exit of arts journalists from the shrinking newspaper industry. Johnson then moved back to his hometown, launching Chicago Classical Review in May 2009.

“With the current extreme volatility of the newspaper business and continuing cutbacks in cultural coverage,” Johnson wrote in an introductory post, “I believe the wealth and variety of music events in a major arts center like Chicago require and, indeed, demand more extensive coverage.”

A national counterpart, The Classical Review, came online in March 2010. And a third regional site, Boston Classical Review, began covering that city’s lively arts and music scene in September 2011.

Previous honorees include WFMT 98.7 FM and James Ginsburg, founder of Cedille Records. The Davee Excellence in the Arts Award will be presented at the IPO’s March 23 concert in Frankfort.

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2 Responses to “SFCR founder to receive award for contributions to the arts”

  1. Posted Feb 22, 2013 at 1:12 pm by Dave R.

    Congratulations, Larry. We miss you down here in Florida!

  2. Posted Feb 27, 2013 at 1:27 pm by Lawrence A. Johnson

    Thanks, Dave.


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