In Saturday’s (2/20) Herald (Everett, Washington), Theresa Goffredo writes, “Members of the now idle Everett Symphony Orchestra are vowing to keep classical music alive in Snohomish County. To do that, they have founded a new organization, the Everett Philharmonic Orchestra. Though it has no money and no place to play, this new philharmonic will have the powerhouse team of conductor Paul-Elliott Cobbs, who will lead the group as maestro and music director, and his wife, Loma Cobbs, who will become the new organization’s executive director. The new Everett Philharmonic has the support of the community, said cello player and operations manager Cami Davis. … The idle Everett Symphony Orchestra cut its season short and played its final concert Jan. 29 with no firm plans for future classical performances. The Everett Symphony board blamed the stagnant economy coupled with years of poor financial planning as the reason for aborting its season and terminating the contracts of all the musicians, along with the contract for longtime and much beloved music director Paul-Elliott Cobbs. … The new Everett Philharmonic will have a 10-person board of directors and is working on establishing nonprofit status. The group is looking for a venue to play a spring gala to kick off the new organization. … Everett Symphony Orchestra’s chief executive officer, Roger Pawley, said Friday that he views the musicians’ new philharmonic positively. ‘Our position is that musicians need to perform and, during our hiatus, this might be a good short-term solution for that,’ Pawley said. He added that the Everett Symphony is working on a long-term solution with its community advisory council.”

Posted February 22, 2010