• 68°

Giving back: Charlie Bernheim chairs symphony celebration

Upcoming events

Here’s a glance at the symphony’s schedule for 2016-17.

Sept. 24 — “Fifty Years Later” concert featuring “Don Juan,” 7:30 p.m., Keppel Auditorium

Nov. 20 — Cinquanta!” dinner and wine tasting, 6 p.m., La Cava

Tickets for this fundraiser are $150 per person, are tax deductible, and will be worth every penny, Charlie says. “You can put that in!”

Dec. 17 — “The Nutcracker,” 6:30 p.m., Keppel Auditorium

Dec. 18 — “The Nutcracker,” 2:30 p.m., Keppel Auditorium

Jan. 7, 2017 — Big Band Bash, 7:30 p.m., Hedrick Little Theatre/Crystal Lounge

Jan. 12, 2017 — N.C. Symphony Educational Concerts for fifth-graders, 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., Keppel Auditorium

Feb. 4, 2017 — “Look Who’s Joining Us” family concert, 4 p.m., Keppel Auditorium

March 9, 2017 — “Our State’s Finest” with the North Carolina Symphony, 7:30 p.m., Keppel Auditorium

April 9, 2017 — “Monumental,” Verdi’s Requiem, 3 p.m. Keppel Auditorium

May 13, 2017 — Pops Concert, “Gershwin,” 7:30 p.m. Varick Auditorium, Livingstone College

June 3, 2017 — Pops at the Post, 8 p.m., Downtown Salisbury

Also in the spring, the symphony will share an evening with pianist Emile Pandolfi in Kannapolis. “Some Enchanted Evening” begins with a pre-concert cocktail reception in the Core Lab lobby, followed by the concert featuring Emile, and ends with a champagne reception at Restaurant 46.

By Susan Shinn
Salisbury Symphony Orchestra

Eight years ago, Charlie and Rachel Bernheim were on their way to Salisbury from New York City when Charlie’s heart stopped and he crashed their car into a tree.

Rachel walked away without a scratch, but Charlie was airlifted to Richmond — the Bernheims were just north of the North Carolina border — and spent the next 25 days in a medically induced coma.

When Charlie recovered, Rachel’s cousin, Mona Wallace, sent a plane to bring the couple back to Salisbury, and Ott and Julie Pinkston were waiting for them at the airport.

“For the next six weeks, we never prepared a meal here,” Rachel says. “People brought food. They brought books. Living in New York, Charlie had never seen that kind of affection.”

“It was more than support,” Charlie remembers. “It was genuine caring.”

Since then, he’s searched for a unique way to give back to the community.

He thinks he’s found it. Charlie, a new member of the board for the Salisbury Symphony Orchestra, has taken on the chairmanship of the symphony’s 50th anniversary celebration committee.

“I thought it would be a great way to give back something to this community that had been so great to me,” Charlie says.

The couple still returns to New York from time to time, where Charlie has kept an apartment for years.

“It’s so wonderful to come down here and have as many friends as we have,” he says.

Charlie is definitely up to the task at hand.

“I was brought up in a very philanthropic family,” he says. “When my mother was 70, she sat on 14 charity boards in New York City. Not only did she raise funds, she helped develop programs.”

Her mantra was, “If you don’t ask, you don’t get,” and Charlie has claimed that for his own.

“So now we’re asking,” he says, on behalf of the symphony.

A retired broker, Charlie has set about the project with gusto. He has two goals for the symphony. First, to raise enough money to cover all expenses for the 50th anniversary year: seven concerts, plus the education program in the schools. That totals $430,000, and half of that has already been raised, he says.

Secondly, Charlie wants to increase the symphony’s endowment from $700,000 to $1 million.

That will help increase the salaries of orchestra personnel. Charlie notes that $75,000 has already been raised toward that endeavor.

“We’re building the future of the symphony for the next 50 years,” he says.

“The symphony is just one aspect of a community’s pride and identity,” Maestro David Hagy says. “People in Salisbury are proud of the fact that there’s a symphony here. So Charlie’s help and knowledge and enthusiasm are absolutely invaluable to our 50th anniversary celebration.”

For donors who give $1,000 and up, the Bernheims will host a dinner — or perhaps a series of dinners — at their home on South Fulton Street. Rachel grew up in this house, which is filled with family photographs and mementos.

For more information about the Salisbury Symphony, call the symphony office at 704-637-4314 or visit www.salisburysymphony.org.

Freelance writer Susan Shinn lives in Salisbury.

Comments

Business

Renting out Wrenn House is next on menu for Bell Tower Green Park

Local

City to purchase, replace floating aerator devices for wastewater treatment

Business

NC Community College president details importance of connection between businesses, educational institutions

Entertainment

Sheriff: Alec Baldwin fired prop gun on movie set that killed woman

Coronavirus

CDC panel recommends expanded COVID-19 vaccine booster rollout

News

Truck driver killed after collision with school bus in Newton

Crime

Iredell County man charged with murder after three bodies found in burned Statesville house

Crime

Massive search for Laundrie ends as FBI identifies remains in Florida

Cleveland

Nation’s largest barn quilt mural to be unveiled in Cleveland on Saturday

College

Charlotte among six schools joining American Athletic Conference

Crime

Few details available after Kannapolis shooting claims life

Business

East Spencer apparel store will host free luncheon for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

College

Catawba College receives record $200 million contribution to endowment

Crime

Blotter: Bullet holes found at Salisbury home

Crime

Rowan Sheriff’s Office releases details of NASCAR driver’s assault at coworker’s home

Elections

Council candidates discuss city’s handling of ‘Fame’ relocation, protesting, pandemic

Business

Making Memore: Entrepreneurs harness power of Kannapolis’ Food Innovation Lab

Education

Shoutouts

Business

DuPont purchases Salisbury-based manufacturing business

Christmas Happiness

Christmas Bureau opens applications for families to get holiday assistance

Education

Spencer Library hosts life pathways event

Local

Salisbury-Rowan NAACP President Gemale Black seeking state branch’s top spot

Education

A fall theme on learning math at Mt. Ulla Elementary

High School

High school volleyball: West takes tournament title with victory over South