Winnipeg Symphony Subscriptions Selling Better Than in Years

Classic Arts News   Winnipeg Symphony Subscriptions Selling Better Than in Years
All too often there's gloomy news about declining subscriptions at orchestras. But the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, whose very existence was in danger not long ago, recently announced a five-year high for subscription sales, with more than 16,000 tickets already sold for the upcoming season.

That translates into C$525,000 in revenue, compared with C$195,500 in subscription sales at the same time last year, according to CBC News.

Executive director Dale Lonis, who took over the helm of the orchestra last July, said he credits the rise in ticket sales to programming that "seems to have resonated with the public" and the fact that all concerts are now performed in one location, the Centennial Concert Hall.

He also enthused in a statement about the efforts of the WSO's new music director, Alexander Mickelthwate. "Alexander is doing a great job at listening to what Winnipeggers want, and working with the orchestra musicians and members of the programming team to put together some of the most exciting programming for all our audiences."

Mickelthwate, 36, is finishing his final year as assistant conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and will soon move with his family to Winnipeg.

The WSO has experienced financial woes recently; the orchestra almost shut down three years ago. Former music director Andrey Boreyko and the musicians accepted a pay cut to help stabilize the financial situation.

Lonis has set a target of C$1 million in subscription ticket sales for the upcoming season, which marks the 60th anniversary of the orchestra.

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