Showing posts from October, 2014

Understanding the Dilemma Orchestras Face when trying to Balanced the Budget

There is more to orchestras balancing their books than just selling more tickets

It is hardly news anymore to hear of an orchestra struggling to balance their budget. Atlanta musicians are locked out for the 2nd time in two years over contract negotiations - the musicians have been asked to take yet another pay cut. The Philadelphia Orchestra declared bankruptcy a couple of years ago. Colorado Symphony has been operating with a deficit for years. These are not isolated examples.

When ever the news reports the demise of an orchestra, there are a half dozen articles that pop up to discussing what changes need to be made in order for orchestras to be profitable again:

- raise ticket prices to cover costs
- lower ticket prices to get more people into the concert hall
- program new music
- program old music
- attract a younger audience
- better leverage the existing audience (particularly the donor base)
The list goes on and on, yet the real problem is: based on the type of orchestra, the…