The Cleveland Orchestra is shattering records like woah

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Attention all ye hangdog defeatists who insist that classical music has died: Severance Hall season-ticket sales revenue from 2012-2013 is on track to set an all-time record, driven by the best-ever ticket sales in November and December.

These records aren't being daintily eclipsed here, either. The Orchestra is shattering previous figures. According to a press release, the value of tickets sold for the Orchestra's performances in the final two months of 2012 totaled $2.8 million, an increase of 62 percent over the same months in 2011. Holiday Festival ticket sales skyrocketed to a record of $1,177,271, 16 percent above the previous record of $1,013,000 in 2007.

Orchestra Executive Director Gary Hanson attributed the success to strategic innovations. The Orchestra has made a concerted effort to attract a younger audience, and the attendance numbers are striking. A social media campaign, discounts for students, and volunteer ambassadors at local universities are all playing a role.

The press release said that more than 200 students, on average, are attending every evening subscription concert — at some concerts, students have represented 20 percent of the audience.

“Our commitment to student attendance and a younger audience is part of a Cleveland Orchestra renaissance, as we commit to being evermore relevant to our hometown and evermore devoted to community service,” Hanson said.

About The Author

Sam Allard

Sam Allard is the Senior Writer at Scene, in which capacity he covers politics and power and writes about movies when time permits. He's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and the NEOMFA at Cleveland State. Prior to joining Scene, he was encamped in Sarajevo, Bosnia, on an...
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