“The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra’s push to rebuild its ranks, a major issue in the stormy nine-week player lockout that delayed the 70th anniversary season, has received a boost in the form of a $1.25 million Musicians’ Endowment Fund pledge,” reports Howard Pousner in Thursday’s (1/8) Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “The gift from longtime ASO patrons Sally and Carl Gable is an incipient one in the ASO’s drive to add 11 endowed full-time positions by the end of the 2017-18 season. ‘We’re just committed to a vibrant, thriving future for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra,” Sally Gable said.… The four-year collective bargaining agreement forged by the musicians and management of the ASO and its parent nonprofit, Woodruff Arts Center, in November calls for the orchestra, which was reduced from 88 full-time musicians in its 2012 contract to 77 this season, to grow back to at least 88 by the new pact’s end.… As a first step in that rebuilding, the Robert W. Woodruff Foundation gave the arts center a $38 million gift in December that included nearly $8 million in endowment matching funds for the ASO. The Gables’ initial $500,000 payment means that the orchestra now has $1 million in cash in the Musicians’ Endowment Fund.” The Gables’ gift will endow the chair of principal harpist Elisabeth Remy Johnson.
Posted January 9, 2015