obituary |

Lillian Barbash, 92, died peacefully in her sleep on Saturday, July 4, at her home in Brightwaters, N.Y.

Long Island’s First Lady of the Arts, she founded and led the Islip Arts Council for 31 years, building it into a world-class presenter of classical music. Tens of thousands attended her free New York Philharmonic park concert every summer.

Born and raised in the Bronx, she married her high school sweetheart, Maurice Barbash in 1947. The two were inseparable until his death in 2013.

Together they co-founded the Long Island Philharmonic, commissioned pieces for Yo-Yo Ma and Emanuel Ax, and created the Bay Shore Schools Arts Education Fund.

Lillian loved opera and chamber music best, and loved sharing her loves with others.

Beloved by all, she is survived by her children Cathy, Susan and Shepard; grandchildren Emma, Ani, Jonah, Lydia, Samuel and Eddie; and great grandchildren Max and Eliza.

Donations may be made in her name to Bay Shore Schools Arts Education Fund, which, among other efforts within the school district, in 2016 sent 500 Bay Shore students on a trip to see Hamilton the musical on Broadway.

Below is a picture of Barbash in NYC that day.