Mary Deissler rolls up her sleeves at the Charlotte Symphony

Posted on: September 27, 2016

“Mary Deissler’s at the wheel, putting pedal to metal and asking, ‘Did you know this thing could go 90 mph?’ ” writes Lawrence Toppman about the new head of the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra in Thursday’s (9/22) Charlotte Observer (North Carolina). “In less than four months as the group’s president and CEO, she has begun or revamped 10 significant programs…. At the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where she was director of campaigns and major gifts from January 2011 to May 2012 … she increased gifts of $10,000 by 20 percent in the first seven months…. ‘My real challenge is to cover the gap of $2 million in revenue over those next three years to balance it out against our annual expenses,’ says Deissler…. She estimates a financial turnaround could take five years…. How is it done? First, ‘ensure we have terrific programming. (Music Director) Christopher Warren-Green has to be able to think big.’… Second, drive audiences to core programs…. Third, design large, revenue-generating events…. Fourth, retool the development department to focus on individual giving.” Says Deissler, “Getting all these wheels spinning is imperative. The symphony needs to get out into the community.… Reaching them where they’re comfortable is a huge part of our strategy.”

Posted September 27, 2016

Pictured: Charlotte Symphony Music Director Christopher Warren-Green and President and CEO Mary Deissler discuss stage lighting and layout at the Belk Theater. Photo by Diedra Laird