When patrons of the Opus Ball gather in the Orpheum Theater on Saturday to raise funds for the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, they’ll have plenty to celebrate.
Founded in 1991 by musicians from the New Orleans Symphony Orchestra, which had just folded, the resurrection of the LPO reads like a Cinderella story. Many accounts of its rebirth compared it to the mythical Phoenix bird ascending from the ashes of its own destruction.
But that wouldn’t be the only time the orchestra would have to regroup. Fourteen years later, when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, most of the musicians evacuated. Flooding from levee breaks inundated the Orpheum, rendering it inoperable for 10 years.