Memphis Symphony hopeful that it will complete 2013-14 season

Posted on: March 18, 2014

“Early last month, the situation looked bleak for the Memphis Symphony Orchestra. It said it was facing a financial crisis, fearing the symphony wouldn’t finish this season without raising another $400,000,” writes Jennifer Backer in Sunday’s (3/16) Commercial Appeal (Memphis). “But two $100,000 donations, several benefit concerts held by the Memphis Symphony Musicians, and program changes have helped close the shortfall this year. ‘It’s looking very promising that we will finish this season,’ said symphony CEO and President Roland Valliere. ‘But we won’t make a formal announcement about next season until we align our expenses with revenue to come up with a financial model that is sustainable.’ The symphony faces a steep climb to get its financial house in order…. Valliere, who took the helm of the Memphis Symphony in November, came from the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, where he instituted a combination of austerity measures and operational changes that saved the orchestra from bankruptcy. Since arriving in Memphis, he’s made similar changes, including reducing the symphony’s staff by six to 12, and working with the musicians to create a financial budget that presumes no deficits in future seasons. ‘Our current operating budget is out of line,’ said Valliere, who said the symphony would announce the plans for next season in May.”

Posted March 18, 2014