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Didi and Oscar Schafer Give $1 Million to Support CONCERTS IN THE PARKS

New York Philharmonic Board Member Oscar Schafer and his wife, Didi, have given a $1 million gift to the New York Philharmonic to support the free CONCERTS IN THE PARKS. This follows a $5 million gift the Schafers made in 2007 to the PARKS series, which has been renamed the New York Philharmonic CONCERTS IN THE PARKS, presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, in their honor. Since 1965, more than 14 million people have attended this popular series, which brings the Philharmonic to the boroughs of New York City each summer.

The 2012 New York Philharmonic CONCERTS IN THE PARKS, presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, began this week and will feature five free outdoor concerts taking place in Prospect Park, Brooklyn (July 11); Cunningham Park, Queens (July 12); the Great Lawn in Central Park, Manhattan (July 13 and 16); and Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx (July 17), conducted by music director Alan Gilbert and guest conductor Andrey Boreyko. In addition, the New York Philharmonic Brass will give a free indoor concert at the Center for the Arts, College of Staten Island, CUNY (July 15). Major corporate support for the 2012 New York Philharmonic CONCERTS IN THE PARKS and the free indoor concert has been provided by Time Warner Inc.

“Classical music has always played a big role in both of our lives,” stated Didi and Oscar, “and we are honored to be able to share that love with thousands of fellow New Yorkers and visitors to the city by helping to support the free New York Philharmonic CONCERTS IN THE PARKS. Sitting under the stars in the city’s beautiful parks, listening to this world-class orchestra, is the most glorious setting for anyone to enjoy enduring musical masterpieces.”

“The CONCERTS IN THE PARKS are one of the New York Philharmonic’s greatest traditions,” said music director Alan Gilbert. “It is one of the Orchestra’s activities that make me feel the most proud. There are many, many New Yorkers for whom the New York Philharmonic’s CONCERTS IN THE PARKS are the New York Philharmonic. Through their generous and continued support of these concerts, Didi and Oscar Schafer show that they share my enthusiasm for these concerts, and I would like to express my enormous gratitude to these two incredible New Yorkers.”

New York Philharmonic executive director Matthew VanBesien remarked: “Didi and Oscar Schafer have been instrumental in helping secure the future of our CONCERTS IN THE PARKS. This series is one of the most powerful manifestations of the vital role that this Orchestra plays in the life of New York and for those who live and work here. It does require significant resources, however, so we are grateful to the Schafers for their generosity that allows audiences throughout the boroughs of New York City to continue to have access to great music, for free, performed by the remarkable musicians of the Philharmonic. We hope the citizens of New York will join the Philharmonic in thanking the Schafers for their commitment to this summer tradition.”

“Didi and Oscar Schafer are exemplary citizens of New York whose generosity is benefitting literally tens of thousands of people every summer,” said Philharmonic board chairman Gary W. Parr. “The New York Philharmonic’s Board of Directors would like to thank them for their dedication and commitment to a beloved metropolitan tradition.”

Mr. Schafer, who joined the New York Philharmonic Board of Directors in 2007, is the managing partner of O.S.S. Capital Management LP, a private investment partnership that he co-founded in 2001, and has been a longtime participant in the Barron’s Roundtable of top money managers.

For more information on the 2012 New York Philharmonic CONCERTS IN THE PARKS, presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, please visit

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