Essay about “Utah Symphony and Utah Opera: a Merger Proposal”

14805 WordsOct 9, 201260 Pages
“Utah Symphony and Utah Opera: a Merger Proposal” Financial Strengths and Weaknesses of the Utah Symphony Before the Merger The financial state of the Utah Symphony before the merger was grim. It was understood by the symphony’s chairman of the board, Scott Parker, that the situation was getting worse. This was aggravated by the downturn of the economy and the event of 9/11. However, even before the economic downturn and 9/11, the symphony was very close to a deficit situation (Delong & Ager, 2005). Scott Parker assumed the chairmanship to try to mitigate the situation. The average endowment or contributions for a Group II orchestra like the Utah Symphony is $8.8 million in FY 2001-2002. The endowment for the symphony is considered in…show more content…
Many people view subsidies for performing arts such as the opera and symphony as support for the snobbish upper end of the income distribution. Governmental and public standpoints regarding the support of arts in the United States differ greatly from that of Canada and Europe, where governments provide primary support for the arts. The main government support for symphony orchestras and other performing arts here in the US emanates indirectly through tax expenditures. In summary, the current financial strength of the Utah Symphony is the above average endowment that it receives from various contributors. However, this current financial strength is not guaranteed to endure. There is projected increase in revenue for FY 2001-2002 but at the same time, there is a projected increase in expenses. A very obvious financial weakness is its expenses compounded by: * High salaries set by collective agreement. * Agreed upon wage increases that do not consider the financial status of the organization. Recommendations Anne Ewers must provide a persuasive strategy to ensure that the financial crisis of the Utah Symphony is a priority prior, during, and following the merger. Anne Ewers has a praiseworthy track record with regards to stabilizing the financial situations of performing arts organizations. During her term as general director of the Boston Lyric Opera, she retired a $450,000 debt

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