Chicago Symphony looking to expand into Western suburbs

Posted on: June 11, 2012

In Thursday’s (6/7) Crain’s Chicago Business, Greg Hinz writes, “The Chicago Symphony Orchestra is engaged in serious talks with officials in DuPage County about beginning a regular, potentially multiweek annual season there to appeal to west suburban patrons. The orchestra and county officials confirm the talks began about six months ago and have moved to a second phase. The new dates might come out of the orchestra’s downtown schedule at Symphony Center on Michigan Avenue. While both sides categorize the talks as ‘preliminary,’ they’re serious enough that they personally involve top officials on either side, including CSO President Deborah Rutter and DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin. For the CSO, a regular west suburban season would offer a shot at new revenue at a time when even top orchestras nationally have begun to fail financially. … For DuPage, luring one of the world’s top music ensembles for even a few days every year would be a sign that it finally has arrived as a location that appeals to even the oldest of old-money institutions. … Right now, [Rutter] said, ‘We have an audience that comes to our (downtown) concerts from the western suburbs.’ But the lengthy travel times involved ‘can be a barrier,’ she said.”

Posted June 11, 2012