Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra

The Future of SBCO

As many of you may be aware, the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra is undergoing a transition concerning our 2017 - 2018 concerts and future seasons.  We have made a decision to place our upcoming season on a temporary hold, as we reexamine our organization and our future as a chamber orchestra.  Most concert attendees and supporters are unaware of the expenses involved in providing large, compelling, musical concerts, which can cost up to $60,000 each.  Ticket sales only generate $10,000 to $12,000, which leaves us with an unrealistic deficit.  We have kept our prices affordable, and to charge enough to fully cover concert costs would be prohibitive to our patrons.

We cannot continue to produce unique musical experiences, distinguished by their intimacy and artistic excellence, without full underwriting of each concert through community support and grants.

On June 3, our board of directors, along with major stakeholders, will participate in a retreat led by a facilitator specializing in crisis management for musical organizations.  Over the last twenty years, the chosen facilitator has provided expertise and guidance to numerous orchestras.  He has helped musical entities, on the brink of closing their doors, transform themselves into thriving, self-sustaining orchestras.

Our retreat goal is to take away one of four options: celebrate 40 years of compelling musical experience and close our doors; continue with smaller venues and eliminate our larger costly concerts; merge with another organization if feasable; provide large concerts if they are entirely underwritten and supported by the community.

We cannot survive without the backing from the Santa Barbara community and look to you for financial assistance and concert participation. Please donate today and help Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra remain a vibrant thread in the tapestry of classical music experiences for the Santa Barbara community.