Your consideration for giving additional financial support for SAO is always appreciated. In any amount.
As a registered 501(c)3 organization; your donation to the St. Augustine Orchestra should be tax deductible.
Why is your support needed?
The great news is, our audiences are steadily growing, and so is our membership.
If a home venue with expanded seating were available, affordable, and adequate for acoustic string/orchestral performance, we’d be well positioned for the next 50 years.
BUT we are facing local “headwinds” to public performance opportunities, seating capacity and thus our audience growth potential:
- Appropriate performance space is becoming more difficult to book. More commercial interests compete for the very few spaces in which we can perform with 50 members.
- Surely, St. Augustine is commercially growing through effective tourism event promotion. These events also compete for the booking dates and same space the Orchestra needs.
- Seating for four public concerts is nearly if not totally sold out (9 of the past 11 concerts), so seating capacity is a limiting barrier, also called “fire code occupancy limits”.
Ticket Price Burden Under Current Commercial Pressures:
The cost for booking the limited available performance space has increased dramatically due to other commercial competitive interests for the space and dates we need.
Example: A wedding event can book a space for $7-10,000 for an evening. To put that in our real terms, the INCREMENTAL ticket price burden, per seat, to absorb that cost would be an additional $30-$45 per ticket for the amount of seating possible, in order to book a Friday night during October to May.
In real terms, a ticket would have to be priced up from its $23 – $25 level, to as much as $50-$60 to absorb the cost of the venue. That burden is heavy on our loyal followers. We are trying, through our business model, negotiations, and altruistic mission, to be lean, efficient, and otherwise do our best to hold down the cost of a ticket. And that’s before we add the production costs of renting a piano, or other unusual instrumentation to expand our programming.
To book 4 Friday evenings in this Town for our next season, $28,000 or more would be paid to cover the venues at “retail” prices. That would not be a venue designed for Orchestral acoustics and presentation. Its a venue with the space to present our footprint.
Your generosity means that a $12-$30 ticket stays in reach of the broad population of St. Johns County. Costs will go up.
SAO has few options to grow our home-town audiences. To offset that, and maintain our sustainability through ticket sales, we travel in order to perform for private events not open to the general Public. In fact, communities outside of St. Augustine have better odds of booking us than the Downtown Historic proximal district.
When you donate to SAO, you are not only saying “Thank you” for the thousands of volunteered hours and instruments donated to outstanding cultural and quality of life enrichment, you are also investing in the long term sustainability and accessibilty through this business environment challenge, perhaps until such time as a concert hall could be built.
- Live, orchestral music for your family, friends and visitors to our City, at reasonable ticket prices for an enriched quality of life for the St. Augustine Public
- Sustain a life fulfilling musical “home ensemble” to many resident musicians whose presence continues to expand with residential growth trends in the area. More talent is moving in.
- An ensemble that individually and collectively reaches out to local area schools, music students, and adults who aspire to learn and appreciate orchestral music, from the Masters to Pops.
Please support a cultural institution that has existed for over 5 decades.
Make your mark on the future of culture in St. Augustine! You’ll be glad you did.
You can be a Donor or a Sponsor (click to find out about added benefits a Sponsor may enjoy). Read below to discover to know us better and what your generosity means to us and the Community…
Thank you for your generosity.
Members of The Board of Directors, Resident Musician Members and non-musician Volunteers of the St. Augustine Orchestra