Reading Symphony’s long road to financial solvency

Posted on: January 29, 2013

In Sunday’s (1/27) News Journal (Wilmington, Delaware), Margie Fishman writes, “About 60 miles away from Wilmington, in a city recently named the poorest in America, the Reading (Pa.) Symphony Orchestra is finally in the black. This year, the Reading Symphony has about the same budget and number of musicians as the Delaware Symphony Orchestra. Several musicians work for both ensembles, earning a similar pay rate. … When Executive Director Joe Tackett arrived three years ago, the Reading Symphony was about $48,000 in the hole and had to dip into its $800,000 reserve fund, following a contentious board debate. … This season, the Reading Symphony is projecting a $22,000 surplus, Tackett said. ‘Our budgeting process every year is not what we hope we can make,’ he said. ‘It’s what we know we’re able to do.’ Reading has built one of the best youth orchestras in the country, drawing from 18 schools. Students play alongside the professional symphony several times a year, helping to build the next generation of symphony subscribers while boosting ticket sales among their enthusiastic parents.”

Posted January 29, 2013