Innovation key to Florida Orchestra’s success

Posted on: May 30, 2014

In Thursday’s Tampa Tribune (Florida), Kurt Loft writes about the Florida Orchestra and interviews President and CEO Michael Pastreich. “Ticket sales continue to grow. More young people are showing up in the concert hall. Fresh faces keep appearing at the podium. During and after the recession, the endowment increased by 70 percent and the board of directors tripled its out-of-pocket contributions. And let’s not forget the musicians, who enjoy playing a diversity of works for the first time, rather than repeating the standards. What’s going on here? A crescendo of inventive thinking. ‘Orchestras aren’t becoming irrelevant, at least those that are innovative,’ Pastreich says from the orchestra’s office in downtown St. Petersburg. ‘There are orchestras out there that struggle, but there’s also a long list of ones that are thriving, just like banks and newspapers are struggling or thriving. The question is how innovative you want to be, and the quality of the work you do.’” The orchestra is currently searching for a music director. “The musicians had to adjust to more than a dozen guest conductors, each vying for the open position of music director. The orchestra played consistently well.… In the past few years, the group has been active recruiting new audiences by reinventing its image.”

Posted May 30, 2014