DSO Announces Audience Access Program With Patron-Minded Pricing

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Single tickets reduced up to 53%; rolled back to 1999 levels; concert ticket costs comparable to an evening at the movies

DETROIT, (May 6, 2011) – The Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) announced today that, with the 2011-12 season, it will initiate its exciting new Patron-Minded Pricing program designed to welcome more people to experience the orchestra through dramatically lowered ticket prices reduced up to 53 percent. 

“We want to share the joy and excitement of our orchestral performances with as many people as possible by making tickets more affordable than they have been since 1999,” said Anne Parsons, President and CEO.  “Witnessing this exciting art form up-close and in-person, where its highest artistic level truly comes to life, has the capacity to change lives by creating gratifying and moving experiences through music.  Our research confirms that sustainability is directly tied to serving more people and lower prices will play an important role in making that possible.  Growing our audience across southeastern Michigan is essential to our mission.” 

Patron-Minded Pricing Means Audience Access

Beginning with the 2011-12 classical season opening in October, single ticket prices will be reduced by as much as 53 percent in some categories and will range from $15 to $50, a significant reduction from the previous range of $19 to $71.  Over half of all tickets will be available at $25 or less.  Beginning in September, a new $25 Student All-Access Pass will provide students with admittance to all DSO concerts at Orchestra Hall.

2011-12 Single Ticket prices:

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    • $15 – Upper Balcony – 21% discount
    • $25 – Students – All DSO concerts (classical, pops, and jazz)
    • $25 – Mid-Balcony – 31% discount
    • $25 – Main Floor B – 53% discount
    • $50 – Main Floor A – 17% discount
    • $50 – Dress Circle – 30% discount
    • $100 – Box Level – 19% discount

When season tickets go on sale on May 23, 8, 12, and 20-concert packages will reflect the Patron-Minded Pricing discounts.  As a result of the DSO’s reduction of ticket prices down to $20 for pops and classical concerts in its current Spring Season, the orchestra has sold 12,303 tickets (approximately 3,000 tickets per week) since April 1.  These brisk sales are five times the normal volume.

Buying concert tickets and subscriptions will be easier than ever with the DSO’s newly redesigned homepage featuring easy-to-navigate buttons with upcoming concerts and reconfigured concert pages that include guest artist bios, calendar connectivity and social media sharing capabilities.  The website can be located at www.dso.org

A New Strategy

“This change in strategy will continue to put Detroit in the vanguard among American orchestras.  We know that price can be a hurdle to attending concerts; this Spring has reminded us that when barriers are reduced, attendance increases dramatically,” said Executive Vice President Paul Hogle.  “By making concerts more accessible to a wider audience, the message that the DSO is a ‘community supported orchestra’ resonates with families across metro Detroit and Southeastern Michigan; attending and making a donation has never been more attractive.  We’ve seen other orchestras, ranging from those in Baltimore, St. Paul and Tampa, employ this model with encouraging success.

In recent years, a new thinking has begun to emerge.  This new thinking posits that audiences are an orchestra’s economic engine and that the size of the audience actually matters.  At the same time, a parallel learning has materialized: philanthropy is an orchestra’s primary revenue.  These conclusions – that audience size matters and that contributions are our primary revenue — are critical linkages on the journey of sustainability.”

About the DSO

The internationally acclaimed Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the fourth-oldest symphony orchestra in the United States, is known for trailblazing performances, visionary maestros and collaborations with the world’s foremost musical artists.  Esteemed conductor Leonard Slatkin, called “America’s Music Director” by the Los Angeles Times, became the 12th Music Director of the DSO during the 2008-09 season.  The DSO offers a year-round performance schedule that includes classical, pops, jazz, young people’s concerts and festivals.  The DSO makes its home in historic Orchestra Hall, one of America’s most acoustically perfect concert halls, and actively pursues a mission to impact and serve the community through music.  For more information visit www.dso.org.

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