Hartford Symphony adds contemporary series, trims Masterworks schedule for 2016-17

Posted on: October 5, 2016

“The Hartford Symphony Orchestra’s upcoming season offers new twists, concepts that have worked in the past, and a reduction—from four to three—in the number of performances offered for each of its signature Masterworks concerts,” writes Michael Hamad in Monday’s (10/3) Hartford Courant (CT). A family concert series will be “performed on weekends by small groups of HSO musicians, in libraries, museums and other venues.… ‘It’s something the symphony had done in previous years, but never really found the right kind of model for sustainability,’ [Executive Director Steve] Collins says. ‘That’s something we need to re-engineer, and we’re doing it this season.’ ” In a new contemporary music series, HSO musicians will perform “in an informal setting, with food and drink, at Hartford’s Real Art Ways.” In trimming the nine-concert Masterworks Series to three performances of each program, the HSO contacted customers “to explain the challenges. The clear preference was to eliminate Thursdays. The move also allows the HSO to stay in Belding Theater,” an 800-seat venue that Collins says has “no bad seats” and “phenomenal” acoustics. Subscription renewal rates “have remained level, even as some customers move from subscription packages to single tickets and flexible-spending options.”  

Posted October 5, 2016