Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

San Diego has a civic organist

Balboa Park is the city's premier park and cultural facilities complex, with gardens, open spaces, museums, theaters, and the San Diego Zoo.  One of the civic assets is the Spreckels Organ Pavilion, run by the Spreckels Organ Society, which presents free outdoor concerts at the facility most weeks throughout the year. The organ is the world's biggest fully outdoor organ.

According to the San Diego Union-Tribune ("Spain's Raúl Prieto Ramírez hired as new San Diego civic organist") a new civic organist has been selected.

From the article:

Ramírez will be paid an annual salary of $78,600 — $6,600 more than his predecessor Williams earned. The Spreckels Organ Society will pay him $50,000. The remainder of his salary will come from the city of San Diego, which will pay Ramírez $550 a week to cover rehearsal time and his selection of repertoire.

The contract requires Ramírez to play at least 44 free Sunday afternoon concerts per year. He will also oversee the booking and presentation of the park’s annual, 10-week Summer Organ Festival. All concerts take place on the 103-year-old Spreckels Organ, which has 4,518 pipes and is the largest outdoor organ in the Western Hemisphere.

“The San Diego civic organist position is like nothing else out there,” Ramírez, 38, wrote in an email from Spain. “It gives me the opportunity to make and present powerful, meaningful music for a wonderful community like the citizens of San Diego on a weekly basis.”

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