Arts institutions struggle to stay afloat

Posted on: January 29, 2009

An Associated Press report by Gillian Flaccus posted Tuesday (1/27) on MSNBC’s website states, “From Baltimore to Detroit to Pasadena, venerable performing arts institutions are laying off performers, cutting programming, canceling seasons and doing without new sets and live music. Some are closing down completely. … Those working feverishly to keep the arts alive point to a 2007 study that found nonprofit arts groups and their audiences generate $166 billion in economic activity each year and support nearly 6 million jobs. The report by the national nonprofit Americans for the Arts found those institutions get half their money from ticket sales, 40 percent from donations and 10 percent from government—all of which have taken big hits during the economic downturn. Bob Lynch, the group’s president and CEO, says about 10,000 arts organizations nationwide—about 10 percent of the total—have shut down or stand on the verge of collapse. … Some groups are trying to educate nonprofits about staying afloat. The New York-based League of American Orchestras has created a 45-minute Web seminar on money management for its members and held a recent conference on financial planning and fundraising strategies.”