Symphony Ball Celebrates.jpg

Symphony Ball Chair Lisa Manning has attended and supported the Nashville Symphony since she and her husband, David, were first friends in the late 1970s. Taking their daughter, Meredith, to see Itzhak Perlman, her violin hero, as a young child remains one of her favorite memories. So it makes sense that once it was considered safe to hold the gala in some fashion, Lisa Manning came on board to start putting the pieces of the puzzle together — and on a short time frame. She enlisted party experts Dori Waller and Kristen Winston, creative talents Sandi and Scott Borchetta and capable Symphony staff to create a Patrons Party and an incredible concert to celebrate 75 years of our Nashville Symphony. This year’s Symphony Ball will look a bit different than those of the past, and Lisa let us in on what concertgoers can expect.

Why did you agree to chair the Symphony Ball?

I was humbled to be invited to chair this 75th anniversary event but needed to consider [it] as my interesting Covid term as Cheekwood board chair was coming to a close. It became clear this was, in fact, a perfect time to chair the Symphony Ball as Walter Sharp, married to Hulda Cheek who resided in our beloved Cheekwood, had founded the Nashville Symphony. What a beautiful example of the connections of two of our most cherished Nashville institutions. Chairing this event, 75 years later, reminds me of the beautiful connections that makes Nashville the city I love.

How has the Symphony Ball been reimagined for 2021, and what can guests expect?

With the uncertainty of COVID-19, it was decided a ball was not possible. A patrons party and a concert with a featured mega-artist became the plan. For the Patrons Party, we have a 75-year retrospective video and a very inspiring musical performance highlighting the future of music. At the concert, we are fortunate to have Brad Paisley present the Harmony Award. Featured violinist Itzhak Perlman is the crème de la crème! He has a heart for our symphony and actually played for a fundraiser after the 2010 flood.

What are you looking forward to most?

I look forward to so many things! I will delight in fellowship with friends, hearing beautiful music and knowing we safely celebrated the 75th anniversary of our amazing symphony.

Who will be receiving the Harmony Award this year, and why were they chosen?

This year, the Harmony Award honors our very talented Nashville Symphony musicians for the millions of lives they have impacted, for the Grammy Award-winning recordings they have played, for the thousands of students they have taught, for the hundreds of performances they share with us, and for being committed to the art of live music.

What do the funds raised go to support?

Funds raised support the Nashville Symphony’s work serving the community through community engagement and educational programs.

Why is it important to support the Nashville Symphony?

Our Nashville Symphony has been inspiring, educating and serving Music City for 75 years! Every day, they strive to create an orchestra with programming that reflects the richness of our community.