Concert honors enthusiastic spirit of dedicated volunteer


POSTED: Monday, October 27, 2008

In the nonprofit world, volunteers like Nancy Bannick come along once in a lifetime. Rarely do you find someone so willing to roll up her sleeves and tackle a project to help our community—and bring along her friends, as well.






        » Featuring: Hawaii Youth Opera Chorus, Honolulu Symphony Orchestra, pianist Beebe Freitas


» In concert: 8 p.m. Nov. 7; open house at 7 p.m.


» Place: Blaisdell Concert Hall


» Tickets: Free


» Call: 596-7858



Nancy, who died earlier this year, was a volunteering icon. Honolulu would certainly not be the same without the gifts she gave us—no gift more valuable than her more than 50 years of community involvement.

So it comes as no surprise that her many friends have come together to plan a tribute concert in Nancy's memory next week. It's a free event, and the whole community is invited to hear the Honolulu Symphony and Hawaii Youth Opera Chorus perform. It will be a cheerful evening of music and hula to remember someone who gave so much to us all.

More than anyone else, Nancy understood the importance of community-building. She was a leader in the fight to preserve old Chinatown, the Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium and Kapiolani Park. Nancy was also a lifelong champion of the arts and a long-serving member of the board of directors of the Honolulu Symphony, Chamber Music Hawaii and Hawaii Public Radio.

As a volunteer, Nancy played a vital role in offering strategic guidance and leadership to a variety of organizations. But that doesn't fairly describe what she gave to an organization—it was so much more.

For us at the symphony offices, Nancy gave her enthusiasm and positive thinking as we planned concerts and community programs. When we needed her, she was there with new ideas and backed by her strong conviction that it was essential for the future of Hawaii to keep a professional symphony orchestra in the state.

She believed in bringing the magic of music into all schools, and you could always find her clapping enthusiastically every weekend at concerts.

It was Nancy's zest for life—and for music—that kept fellow volunteers and staff energized. And if you were to come upon her while stuck in traffic on Kapiolani Boulevard, you could always count on a friendly wave from Nancy in her signature VW bug. That's a memory that will always make me smile.

The Nancy Bannick Tribute Concert celebrates the life of a much-loved community leader and the value that all volunteers bring to the fabric of our daily lives. This concert is for everyone, a fitting tribute to Nancy's memory. I hope to see you there.