“The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra has posted a half million dollar deficit, despite record attendances in 2015,” writes Dewi Cooke in Friday’s (4/29) The Age (Australia). “The $577,653 deficit, detailed in its annual report, comes after the MSO ended 2014 with more than $200,000 in surplus. The orchestra actually increased its box office takings last year ($10.2 million up from $10 million) but chairman Michael Ullmer said … increased staff and artist’s costs, combined with federal and state funding that doesn’t keep up with changes to inflation, led to the loss…. Last year the orchestra cut 10 administrative jobs in an effort to save costs, and spent less on marketing and production, but Ullmer said it is possible it will face another deficit in 2016. On top of the administrative changes, there was movement at the organizational level,” with Managing Director Andre Gremillet leaving for the Cleveland Orchestra in October. Sophie Galaise took the post of managing director in March 2016. “In 2015, the orchestra calculated that it ‘reached’ 317,501 people—a combination of dedicated MSO concerts as well as times the orchestra were hired to perform, free concerts and performances of the MSO chorus.”

Posted April 29, 2016

Melbourne Symphony Orchestra photo by James Ambrose