Famed composer-conductor John Williams and his wife, Samantha, have made a significant pledge to the Los Angeles Philharmonic Centennial Campaign, it was announced Friday.
The total amount of the gift was not disclosed, but goes toward the organization’s $500 million Centennial Campaign, which began in 2012 and where every dollar contributed through 2021 is counted toward the overall fundraising goal.
The gift will provide for the naming of the John and Samantha Williams creative chair, which endows the position currently held by composer and artistic planner John Adams, according to the philharmonic.
“John Williams is one of the most beloved figures in the musical world, known not only for his memorable film scores, but also for his personal humanity and generosity of spirit,” philharmonic CEO Simon Woods said. “If ever you wanted a concrete illustration of that, here it is. He has demonstrated his deeply held belief that musical institutions play an important role in civic life through an act of great generosity to his hometown orchestra.
“John has been a treasured member of the LA Phil family for 40 years and we could not be more grateful for his support of our mission to bring music to Los Angeles for the next 100 years and beyond,” Woods said.
Williams has composed the music to numerous hit films, including “Star Wars,” “Jaws” and “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.”
“It’s a privilege to congratulate the Los Angeles Philharmonic on its sustained commitment to the highest artistic standards,” Williams said. “Support of the orchestra presents us all with an opportunity to strengthen and maintain the cultural life that is indispensable to our community.”
Williams celebrates the 40th anniversary of his Hollywood Bowl debut with three concerts this weekend.
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