Latter-day Saints Foundation gives Utah Symphony $500,000

Posted on: March 26, 2010

In Thursday’s (3/25) Deseret News (Salt Lake City, Utah), Aaron Falk and Abigail Shaha report, “The Utah Symphony and Opera is getting a gift that should be music to the ears of members and supporters. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Foundation will donate $500,000 to the music organization, officials announced Thursday. … Symphony leaders will receive $200,000 outright, while the remaining $300,000 will be donated as a challenge grant that encourages businesses and donors to make matching contributions. Melia Tourangeau, president and chief executive officer of the Utah Symphony and Opera, said the LDS Foundation’s gift will help her organization stay in the black despite big budget shortfalls. ‘When we started this fiscal year, in light of the economic situation, we had a huge shortfall in our formulated funds,’ said Tourangeau. In total, the organization was short $2.6 million. Musicians accepted a $500,000 cut in salary and benefits a year ago, and in October, they donated another $1.3 million in salary and benefits back to the organization. But even after those cuts, the organization still needed almost a million dollars to make up the shortfall. ‘With this gift, we have a real fighting chance of balancing the budget this year,’ said Tourangeau. ‘Which is huge for this economic climate.’ ”

Posted March 26, 2010