Opinion Columns & Blogs

Late Columbus arts patron was responsible for this wonderful evening at RiverCenter

On Oct. 4, our extended family had the opportunity to experience a singular event that reflected the warmth and hospitality of this city, but also the commitment that it has made to support bringing world-class arts programming to Columbus. The RiverCenter hosted a performance of the chamber ensemble of the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, an internationally acclaimed orchestra. Moreover, the ensemble presented the world premiere of a new piece by virtuoso composer and violist Sally Beamish. Columbus should be duly proud to have been chosen as the site for this premier and it speaks volumes about the well-established and continually growing musical culture of the city.

The concert was the first in a series established upon her death by a gift from our mother, Mrs. Virginia Illges Norman, a longtime champion of the arts in Columbus. She would have been honored and delighted at the presence at the event of so many of her friends and others, who themselves are wonderful contributors to the arts and to the musical life of the city. Our family, which included some visiting from Atlanta, Savannah, North and South Carolina and Texas were immensely touched by the gracious reception we received from those in attendance, as well as from the musicians who performed. Those of us returning to our home town were gratified to see its remarkable growth and humbled that, despite that growth, it has retained its warmth and grace — truly a unique and wonderful city. Thank you!

Alec Norman is a resident of San Antonio, Texas.