As of March 1, 2012, available funds for the Alton Symphony Orchestra totaled $3,031.  The projected expenses needed to complete our season total $9,645.  Assuming some modest ticket sale income from our concert in April, the Alton Symphony Orchestra would be in the red by approximately $6,000 at the end of our season.  Therefore, the Alton Symphony Orchestra must raise $6,000 or we will be forced to dissolve the orchestra (our bi-laws do not allow the symphony to operate in the red). 

The two main reasons for the existence of the Alton Symphony Orchestra are 1) to provide an opportunity for members of our community to perform in a symphony orchestra, and 2) to provide quality symphonic concerts for the community.  Therefore, the Alton Symphony Board of Directors decided on a plan that would address this shortfall through donations from orchestra and board members, as well as from members of the greater Alton and Godfrey community.  The Alton Symphony Board of Directors and Alton Symphony Orchestra members have pledged to donate at least $3,000 toward this effort.  We are looking to the greater Alton and Godfrey community to donate the remainder of the funds ($3,000) needed to avoid dissolving the orchestra.

No single expense or loss of income is responsible for our current financial situation and our Board of Directors has taken many steps to reduce our costs through the years.  Ten years ago, our annual operating budget was approximately $70,000, whereas we have operated on approximately $50,000 annually for the past two years.  Our major sources of income are concert proceeds (40%), donations (30%), and fundraising (20%).  To date, income from all of these sources is down slightly from years past, whereas our operating expenses have increased slightly.  Together, these differences account for the current shortfall.

The Alton Symphony Orchestra has a 67 year legacy of enriching our community through exceptional concert programing, educational activities, and support for local non-profit organizations.  Our Marie Stillwell Young Artists Competition advances the careers of young musicians.  We introduce thousands of children to symphonic music each year through our Children’s Holiday Concert and other educational programs.  Finally, we use our performances and chamber groups to assist other regional non-profit organizations, such as Alton Memorial Hospital, Riverbender.com Community Center, St. Peter and Paul Church, Wreaths Across America, and Toys for Tots.  We are counting on the generosity of the Alton-Godfrey community to ensure that the valuable services and beautiful music the Alton Symphony Orchestra provides to the community does not end. 

Jerre Honke, President Alton Symphony Orchestra Board of Directors writes 

"The Alton Symphony Orchestra is very grateful for the generosity and support our community has provided over the last 67 years, but we now find ourselves in a financial crisis we have not faced before.  We need to raise $6,000 immediately or we will be forced to cancel the remaining concert of the season, the Marie Stillwell Young Artist concert, and dissolve the orchestra.  Faced with this reality, orchestra and board members have pledged to donate half of the amount needed.  I am asking members of the greater Alton and Godfrey community to match the orchestra and board member’s generous donations.  Only with a united effort can we survive this crisis and the Alton Symphony Orchestra is depending on your charitable response. 

No single expense or loss of income is responsible for our current financial situation and our Board of Directors has taken many steps to reduce our costs through the years.  Ten years ago, our annual operating budget was approximately $70,000, whereas we have operated on approximately $50,000 annually for the past two years.  Our major sources of income are concert proceeds (40%), donations (30%), and fundraising (20%).  To date, income from all of these sources is down slightly from years past, whereas our operating expenses have increased slightly.  Together, these differences account for the current shortfall.

The Alton Symphony Orchestra is one of many valuable assets in the Riverbend community.  Organizations like the Jacoby Arts Center, Alton Little Theater, and the Alton Symphony Orchestra play as much of a role in making our community an attractive place to live and work as the beautiful bluffs along the Great River Road.  We need to preserve these assets as permanent fixtures of our community.

The Alton Symphony Orchestra has a 67 year legacy of enriching our community through exceptional concert programing, educational activities, and support for local non-profit organizations.  Our Marie Stillwell Young Artists Competition advances the careers of young musicians.  We introduce thousands of children to symphonic music each year through our Children’s Holiday Concert and other educational programs.  Finally, we use our performances and chamber groups to assist other regional non-profit organizations, such as Alton Memorial Hospital, Riverbender Community Center, St. Peter and Paul Church, Wreaths Across America, and Toys for Tots.

Living my entire life in the Alton-Godfrey area, I have a great deal of confidence in the generosity of my neighbors and friends.  We all work and strive to preserve our community’s assets.  Your generosity is needed now more than ever to ensure that the valuable services and beautiful music the Alton Symphony Orchestra provides to the community does not end.  To ensure your donation is properly acknowledged along with our sincere gratitude, please use the enclosed form."

Click here to download the donation form.

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