In Friday’s (5/31) Plain Dealer (Cleveland), Zachary Lewis writes, “The Cleveland Orchestra’s push to attract more young people is exceeding even the highest expectations. Over the course of the just-ended 2012-13 Severance Hall season, total attendance by students increased 65 percent, from about 8,000 last season to over 13,000. Where once, students only represented a small sliver of the audience, this season they comprised on average some 13 percent, the orchestra reported. ‘The growth in student attendance is clearly changing the composition of our Severance Hall audiences,’ said executive director Gary Hanson in a written statement. … But students didn’t just help diversify the audience. Purchases by students through special discount programs also pushed overall tickets sales to new heights. More than 44,000 individual tickets were sold last Severance Hall season, a record-setting mark. Of the orchestra’s 68 total performances, 13 were sold-out. … Students enrolled in the orchestra’s ‘Student Advantage’ program can purchase tickets to any concert for $10 or $15. More avid young listeners also have the option of a $50 ‘Frequent Fan’ card, good for one seat to all regular subscription concerts.”

Posted May 31, 2013