In Monday’s (3/14) Dayton Daily News (Ohio), Terry Morris writes, “The Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra has launched the public phase of a $1.4 million campaign to sustain the orchestra’s future. More than $950,000 has been raised privately in the ‘Protect and Secure’ drive, which seeks to put the orchestra on solid footing by 2012-13—needing no year-end emergency gifts to balance its budget. Philanthropist and retired Berry Co. executive Charles D. Berry has pledged to match every dollar contributed between now and the $1.2 million mark, which would ensure success. The call for donations caps a three-year process that has seen the DPO downsize staff, reduce pay across the board, cut expenses, focus programming on new, more popular alternatives like rock ‘n’ roll and pursue new audience members. A total of 20,000 first-timers have come through the doors since March 2009. Season ticket purchases for 2011-12 are running 5 percent ahead of last   year, which ended up 2.7 percent higher than 2009-10 sales. … The balanced budget in 2009-10 was the first in five seasons that was achieved without dipping into reserves.”

Posted March 14, 2011