The San Diego Symphony knew that last year’s very successful centennial season would be hard to match, but the recently completed 2011–2012 season turned out to be its most successful year ever. Senior Director of Marketing Stephen Baker said that, subject to audit, the San Diego Symphony balanced its budget for the 14th consecutive year. Ticket sales reached an all-time high, with an increase of 4.5% over the previous year. The total operating budget is currently over $20 million, up 135% from 2003’s $8.5 million budget. Some of last season’s highlights include the American premiere of Qigang Chen’s Enchantement oubliés, Tan Dun’s Violin Concerto, and Dave and Chris Brubeck’s Ansel Adams: America (performed with a collection of Adams’ photographs displayed overhead). The San Diego Symphony also released the world premiere recording of Behold the Bold Umbrellaphant by Lucas Richman, with accompanying poetry and narration by Jack Prelutsky. Also featured on the release is Saint-Saëns’ Carnival of the Animals, performed by pianists Jon Kimura Parker and Orli Shaham, with Prelutsky narrating his original poetry.
From San Antonio Symphony delegate Emily Freudigman: The musicians of the San Antonio Symphony were honored to welcome ICSOM Chairperson Bruce Ridge May 23–25 for a return visit to the Alamo City. During his stay, Bruce met with the negotiating committee, members of the orchestra committee, artistic liaison committee, musician board representatives, and our lawyer. He addressed the musicians of the Orchestra at a special meeting of our players association. Bruce also met with our CEO and one member of our board’s negotiating committee, interviewed with three local arts and business reporters and was a guest and speaker at a luncheon prepared for the orchestra and staff by the volunteers of the San Antonio Symphony League. All this, in less than 48 hours on the ground! As always, Bruce’s presentation to the musicians was inspiring and energizing. His message of positivity resonated deeply with the membership, and everyone was greatly impressed by the thoroughness of his preparation and understanding of our local issues. With respect and gratitude, thanks to Bruce for his time and tirelessness on all our behalf!
The musicians of the North Carolina Symphony recently reached an agreement that makes its principal librarian a full, tenured member of the bargaining unit. The orchestra has also signed on to the AFM’s Integrated Media Agreement (IMA), bringing the number of signatory orchestras to 49 as of this writing.