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Ars Nova Workshop rallies community support following partial collapse of Sun Ra House in Philadelphia

Ars Nova Workshop extends a heartfelt “thank you” to everyone who has reached out to help the Sun Ra Arkestra after a partial collapse of the “Sun Ra House,” the Philadelphia home of the Arkestra since 1968. Several long-time members of the Arkestra live there, including Marshall Allen, who is almost ninety-seven years young and the leader of the Arkestra for the past twenty-five years.

Ars Nova Workshop is now working with a coalition of foundations, volunteers, contractors, and legal advisors to secure the house by making sure the existing structure has all necessary repairs so that the quality of life for those who live there is held to a high standard; and by planning for the future, so that the legacy and spirit of Sun Ra and the Arkestra continues for years to come. (Special thanks to the Robert D. Bielecki Foundation, Frank Reis of Walnut Tree Construction, and the Presser Foundation.) We will keep you informed of the progress toward that goal and, if and when the time is right, we will make sure there is a way for any and all to donate directly to the House, so that the Sun Ra Arkestra is celebrated and uplifted as they should be!

Show Your Support

In the meantime, Ars Nova is grateful for any donations that you can make to support us in this work. We are a non-profit organization, which means that we depend on donations by music lovers like all of you just to keep the wheels turning — and if you include a note with a little shout-out to the Arkestra, we will pass along your good wishes!

Donate Today

If you would like to donate directly to Marshall Allen, you can do so by mailing a check made out to “Marshall Allen” to:

5626 Morton Street
Philadelphia, PA 19144

Save the Date

Ars Nova Workshop will be holding a virtual fundraiser a little later this spring, and we will be honoring Marshall Allen! Tickets will be available soon — but for now, you can Save the Date: Thursday, May 20, 2021, at 7:00PM. We’ll be sending out a general invitation in a few weeks.


Cover: Sun Ra House, Philadelphia, February 2021 / Photo by Emma Lee (WHYY)