2015/16: A record-breaking season for the TSO

July 15, 2016

The 2015/16 season ends on a positive note for the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO). The TSO concludes the 2015/16 season with a surplus of revenues over expenses for a third consecutive year.

In addition to this third surplus, the TSO has reduced its accumulated deficit by approximately $4 million (from $12 million to under $8 million).

These results were possible through an increase of more than 1,000 new donors versus last season, growth in all donor categories, the donation of a 1703 Amati viola, and strong supplementary support from the Toronto Symphony Foundation. In 2015/16, the TSO was able to achieve a 20-year record high in donations.

Audience levels during the season also soared to record heights as the TSO sought to increase its audience base and make classical music more accessible to Torontonians through affordable prices. Over the course of 2015/16, the TSO presented 44 sold-out performances; welcomed 23,000 first-time attendees; reached a new milestone with total attendance of more than 250,000—the highest in five years; and broke all previous attendance records for Messiah, the Mozart Festival, and the New Creations Festival; and the radio show, Sunday Night with the TSO, is still #1 in its time slot in Toronto with 43,000 weekly listeners.

“I am particularly grateful for the increased efforts of all of our donors and volunteers, extraordinarily devoted individuals who, because of their passion for music, donate their time, energy, and expertise, as well as financial support,” states Interim President & CEO Sonia Baxendale. “And of course, none of this would have been possible without the unwavering support and hard work of the TSO community—including our musicians, staff, and audience—who are all superb ambassadors for the organization.”

Finally, TSO Board Chair Richard Phillips reported that the search for both a new Music Director and a new CEO is progressing well. “The TSO is a very well-regarded orchestra and Toronto, as the fourth-largest city in North America, is a desirable destination for worldwide talent,” states Mr. Phillips. The TSO is working with an executive search firm to find a CEO, and an internal committee has already begun to meet and explore Music Director candidates. “We are confident in the processes we have established to complete both of these important hires, but we also believe that the stellar senior management team we already have in place is fully able to continue to achieve the kind of success we had in 2015/16. The TSO is on a great path and has lots of bright things ahead,” said Mr. Phillips.

The TSO’s financial year-end results will be audited over the summer months and a formal annual report will be issued in the fall.

The TSO Season Presenting Sponsor is BMO Financial Group.
The TSO Season Patron is The Renette and David Berman Family Foundation.

Infographic highlighting the TSO's 2015/16 season

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About the TSO: Founded in 1922, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra is one of Canada’s most important cultural institutions, recognized internationally. Music Director Peter Oundjian leads the TSO with a commitment to innovative programming and audience development through a broad range of performances that showcase the exceptional talents of the Orchestra along with a roster of distinguished guest artists and conductors. The TSO also serves the larger community with TSOUNDCHECK, the original under-35 ticket program; the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra; and music-education programs that reach tens of thousands of students each year.

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Media Contacts:

Francine Labelle
Director of Public Relations
Toronto Symphony Orchestra
416.593.7769 X 267
flabelle@TSO.CA

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