Charleston Symphony board looking to make cuts

Posted on: February 19, 2009

In Wednesday’s (2/18) Charleston City Paper (South Carolina), Greg Hambrick reports that the Charleston Symphony Orchestra “is expected to run out of money sometime in March, likely necessitating pay cuts through the rest of the season. In the meantime, the board and musicians will have to make tough decisions about next season. Board leadership says cuts will have to come from the core group of 46 players. But those musicians say the organization can do more—more shows, more special events, more fund-raising, more promotions—without having to lose one instrument. The difference at this point is a projected $500,000 hole in the orchestra’s $2.9 million budget. … Orchestra members say the board hasn’t capitalized on the one thing they have in large supply: talented musicians with time to kill. … Right now, the orchestra is using the players at about half of what they could be, says Tim O’Malley, a cello player and local union representative. … Private shows account for about 29 percent of the budget, but O’Malley says that opportunities have been missed that would grow that pot of money. … There may be opportunities for additional private performances, but [board chairman Ted] Legacy says they’re not enough to make up the spread.”