FOMC names Galef to board, engages Executive Director and Marketing & Communications Director

Westchester’s venerable chamber music series is “re-committed to the future”

MILLWOOD, NY – Friends of Music Concerts, which presents the finest in professional chamber music, announced that former legislator Sandy Galef has been named to the Board of Directors. In addition, FOMC announced that it has retained, on a consulting basis, Martin Kagan as Executive Director and Solange De Santis as Marketing and Communications Director.

“As we celebrate our 70th season, Friends of Music Concerts is recommitting itself to its mission and future. We are delighted that Sandy has accepted our invitation, as the board is committed to seeking new members. We are also adding professional expertise in fund raising, board development and marketing,” said FOMC President Susan Harris.

“We remain committed to our mission: engaging audiences of all ages with the greatest chamber music artists of our time and supporting music students from underserved communities,” Harris said.

“I am thrilled to join my fellow music lovers on the Friends of Music Concerts board. I’ve been attending the concerts for years. Enjoying great classical music, advancing the organization and supporting the musicians of tomorrow – what could be better?” Galef commented.

In addition to Galef and Harris, volunteer board members are: VP Keith Austin, Treasurer Marc Auslander, Secretary Peter Oden, David Kraft, Bruce MacLennan, Rosella Ranno and Betsy Shaw Weiner.

Galef served as a member of the NYS Assembly from 1993 to 2022, representing the 90th district first, then the 95th district. In 1980, Galef was elected to the Westchester County Board of Legislators, where she represented the 2nd and 9th districts and served as the minority leader from 1984 until 1992, when she was elected to the Assembly.

Kagan has over 30 years of senior management experience in the arts and cultural field. In his past positions he has proved his ability to design, develop and implement innovative and entrepreneurial approaches to leadership, strategic planning, building facilities, finance, board relations, consensus building, grant making, fundraising, and administration. Highlights of his career include Assistant Vice President of Cultural Affairs for Pace University (overseeing the Schimmel Theatre), Executive Director of Paul Taylor Dance Company, Alex Theatre and OPERA America.

De Santis has extensive experience in journalism, corporate communications and marketing. She was a reporter with the Wall Street Journal and an editor with Reuters in the U.S. and Canada. Her theater articles have appeared in and American Theatre magazine. Her arts marketing experience includes the position of Executive Director with St. Thomas Orchestra.

The second half of Friends of Music Concerts’ 70th season begins on Sunday, March 10, 3 p.m., with bass-baritone Joseph Parrish and pianist and soprano Chelsea Guo.

Pianist Michelle Cann, presented by Curtis Institute of Music, arrives on Saturday, April 13, 8 p.m. Her program includes works by African-American composers and a Rachmaninoff prelude arrangement by African-American pianist Hazel Scott.

The Isidore String Quartet performs on Sunday, April 28, 3 p.m. Recipients of a 2023 Avery Fisher Career Grant, their program will include works by Bach, Shirazi and Mendelssohn.

Performances are scheduled to take place at Sleepy Hollow High School auditorium, 210 North Broadway, Sleepy Hollow, N.Y., with ample free parking and handicapped access.

Friends of Music history

Founded in 1954, Friends of Music Concerts’ first concert featured the young Juilliard String Quartet. Since then, FOMC has brought to Westchester many chamber music groups of world renown, soloists and developing artists. FOMC’s mission has always maintained a special focus on keeping musical experiences affordable and building audiences of the future.

Its Partnerships in Education Program sponsors one-day residencies of young professional musicians at several Westchester County schools throughout the concert season.

Its new Scholarship Program benefits two of Westchester’s top music schools – Hoff-Barthelson and Music Conservatory of Westchester — supporting students from underserved communities.

Subscriptions and tickets

For holiday gift-giving and the spring season, patrons may buy a mini-subscription of three tickets for $90 (a $15 savings) and use them in any combination at any concert. Single tickets are $35 for adults and free for those 18 and under. Go to

Friends of Music Concerts, Inc. | P.O. Box 675 | Millwood, NY 10546 Tel (914) 861-5080 |

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