After recent million-dollar donations to the Lewiston City Library and the Camp Grizzly Boy Scout camp near Harvard, Pullman benefactors Ed and Beatriz Schweitzer have lent their support to the Washington Idaho Symphony.The Schweitzers will give the symphony $150,000 a year over the next two years. In all their gift will total $300,000.
The money will be used to support regular programming and add special performances, including a fully staged opera and ballet, according to a news release from symphony director and conductor Jeremy Briggs Roberts.
The funds will also be used to support the orchestra and staff and make a venue change to an acoustically viable performance space.
As a part of the donation Beatriz Schweitzer will join the Washington Idaho Symphony Board of Directors as an “ex-officio” member, Roberts wrote, adding that the symphony plans to work with the Schweitzers to establish a long-term community-funded endowment that will preserve the organization as a “perpetually valued community cultural asset.”
“This major gift speaks volumes about Ed and Beatriz Schweitzer’s supreme generosity, and their strong ongoing dedication to making our communities better places to live,” Roberts wrote. “The Schweitzers’ incredible support represents a transformative event in our arts community, and shows to the outside world our area’s deep and profound commitment to a vibrant artistic and cultural environment.”
The symphony has provided professional orchestral concerts to the Palouse area and the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley since 1972. Its more than 70 instrumentalists are primarily resident music faculty, professional freelance musicians, and graduate students of Washington State University and the University of Idaho.