Grand Opera House faces financial challenges

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800px-Grand_Opera_House_WilmingtonThe Grand Opera House is asking patrons for contributions and volunteer help as it faces financial challenges in a difficult environment for the arts.

Published reports indicate The Grand laid off a quarter of its staff in an effort to deal with its finances.

“The last six years at The Grand have been marked with many successes. But these are tough economic times for the arts. Like many other similar organizations, The Grand has experienced ongoing financial stress as our traditional sources of funding no longer sustain current programming levels,” Director Steve Bailey and Board Chairman Skip Pinella wrote in the letter to supporters and ticket-buyers.

“The last six years at The Grand have been marked with many, many successes. But these are tough economic times for the arts. Like many other similar organizations, The Grand has experienced ongoing financial stress as our traditional sources of funding no longer sustain current programming levels,” Bailey and Pinella wrote.

 

The letter stated said The Grand is “carefully considering the suspension of financially unsustainable programs which includes a number of staff reductions.”

 

“We are optimistic about the future, and believe that when the economy improves and funding becomes more available, we will be able to reinstate more of these programs that enrich our community,” the letter stated.

 

They went on to suggest contributions to the organization, since tickets alone only partially support The Grand, which offers subsidies to keep concerts affordable. Contributing to the problems of The Grand was the decision by the Delaware Symphony to perform elsewhere, due to the costs of operating at the theater. The symphony has also faced financial problems and laid off staff.

 

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