Honolulu Symphony Appoints New Executive Director

Classic Arts News   Honolulu Symphony Appoints New Executive Director
Tom Gulick has been named executive director of the Honolulu Symphony, effective immediately, the orchestra announced.

Gulick was recently executive director of the Orange County, California-based Ballet Pacifica for two years. His 25 years of experience in marketing and development in the performing arts also includes stints as executive director of marketing and development for San Francisco Opera, vice president of marketing for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and director of marketing for the Indianapolis and Oregon Symphony Orchestras.

Gulick, 53, told The Honolulu Advertiser, "The first order of business is dealing with the current cash and budget situation, both to finish out this year and to prepare to have the money in place to get through next year. We've identified a need beyond what we're seeing currently in ticket revenues and normal donations and contributions. It's a critical need."

Gulick replaces Gideon Toeplitz, former managing director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, who was named interim president in Honolulu after a rocky period that saw five senior members of management resign in May 2005 — on top of the Hawaii orchestra's persistent money cash problems. Toeplitz left in March.

The Honolulu Symphony musicians, who had agreed to a 20 percent across-the-board pay cut in 2004, lobbied to have an outside consultant review the orchestra's management practices. The audit, released in early 2005, was critical of the orchestra's administration, although Bloom said at the time his resignation was not related to the audit.

But the situation has improved for the 106-year-old orchestra recently. As of December 2005, fundraising was up nearly 50 percent from the previous year, Gideon Toeplitz said in a previous article in the Advertiser. In May of this year the Hawaii state government appropriated $4 million to the Symphony's endowment and $150,000 to its education programs.

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