Hit by recession, arts organizations and funders get creative

Posted on: October 5, 2009

In Thursday’s (10/1) Crain’s New York Business, Lisa Fickenscher and Hilary Potkewitz writes, “A lack of money sure can bring out the creative qualities in a person. This was a recurring mantra at forums for arts organizations and funders at Crain’s Future of New York City: Performing Arts conference Wednesday, which was co-sponsored by Columbia University’s School of the Arts. Some of the major foundations that arts organizations rely on for financial support say they are still in the business of writing checks, but that they are looking for other ways to help as their own budgets continue to shrink. The J.P. Morgan Chase Foundation, for example, is considering a request to turn over a Washington Mutual bank branch in the city to an arts organization which needs the space. … ‘Now is a time where you have to get super-creative with fundraising,’ said Graham Parker, executive director of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, ‘and that’s good because we’re in this business because we’re creative people…. Mr. Parker forged an agreement with a classical music radio station to broadcast concerts at Carnegie Hall. ‘It’s not that big a hassle to drop down a few microphones on stage, and then we’ve just increased our audience by ten-fold,’ he said. He’s leaning on musicians and composers from the orchestra’s countless collaborations to open more doors.”

Posted October 5, 2009