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 could be tax deductible according to applicable laws.
We are delighted to announce that we have an anonymous donor who has offered to match the first $1,000 given to the St. Augustine Orchestra between Oct. 18th and Nov. 18th! Click above to find out how your generosity will be matched.
Why is your support needed?
Our members are volunteers. But our operations, and our capital needs, are not free.
We are one of many performance ensembles facing local “headwinds” to public performance opportunities. Due to the increasing number of events in St. Augustine, and the demand for performance space, venue availability and prices are reflecting just what you’d expect: higher costs and competition for dates. When those costs intersect with limited seating capacity, all factors combine to contain our audience growth potential:
- More commercial interests compete for the very few spaces in which we can perform with 50 members. Outdoors temperature, humidity and heat put major stress and risk expensive repair to stringed instruments.
- Surely, St. Augustine is commercially growing through effective tourism event promotion. These tourism funded events also compete for the booking dates and space the Orchestra needs and drive up costs for local organizations like ours.
- Seating for four public concerts is nearly if not totally sold out more often than not. Its a great problem to have, but to absorb higher costs of production, limited seating capacity (fire code limits) is a financially limiting barrier we can’t resolve on our own.
Upward Ticket Price Pressures Are a Result of Current Commercial Climate: Keep it affordable for residents!
The supply of suitable venue space in St. Augustine doesn’t exist for an Orchestra. The spaces available weren’t meant to be concert halls. The seating and sight lines are limiting. The climate control is less manageable or not at all – wooden instrument respond to heat, humidity, cold and wind.
Example: A wedding event can book a concert space we utilize for $7-10,000 for an evening. To put that in our real Orchestra ticket price terms, the INCREMENTAL ticket price burden, per seat, to absorb that cost would be an additional $30-$45 per ticket per seat.
In real terms, a ticket would have to be priced up from its $22 – $25 level, to as much as $50-$60 to absorb the cost of the venue. That burden is very heavy on our loyal followers and residents. We are trying, through our business model, negotiations, and mission values, to be lean, efficient, and otherwise do our best to hold down the cost of a ticket.
Would you like a piano feature? We can do that. It adds another 40% to our cost of production: renting a piano, moving it in and tuning it twice because we don’t have a dedicated space.
Your generosity could be expressed in donating a piano concert ($5,000) which means that a $12-$27.50 ticket stays in reach of the broad population of St. Johns County AND we all get the pleasure of a special performance.
SAO has few options to grow our home-town audiences in local settings, so we travel in order to perform for private events not open to the general Public. Private communities outside of St. Augustine have better odds of booking us than the proximal Downtown Historic District.
So won’t you consider donating this year?
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 accessibility through this local historic district 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