In one Canadian orchestra, 60% of subscribers are donating their tickets

In one Canadian orchestra, 60% of subscribers are donating their tickets


norman lebrecht

March 31, 2020

Symphony Nova Scotia cancelled its season on 13 March with 18 concerts to play.

It decided to pay the musicians to the end of the season.

In response, over 60% of subscribers are donating the value of their tickets to the orchestra. CEO Chris Wilkinson said, ‘Your ticket donation means that we will make music again.’


  • V.Lind says:

    That is very Nov Scotia. God bless ’em.

  • Mustafa Kandan says:

    Anyone who loves music would not ask for refunds at this time.

    • Saxon Broken says:

      Many in the audience earn less than the musicians, and have themselves lost their jobs. Why on earth wouldn’t these people ask for their money back?

      • Music lover says:

        Another option offered was exchanging one’s ticket for another concert in the 2020-21 season. Many people will have done that.

  • S. Chappell says:

    “We all in this together” rings true here in Halifax, Nova Scotia

  • S. Chappell says:

    moderator: above comment should be:
    ” We are all in this together” rings true here in Halifax, Nova Scotia

  • Edgar Self says:

    Symphony Nova Scotia’s great former conductor Georg Tintner would be proud of this if he were restored to life and health. Tintner was a real conductor — he even looked like a real conductor! — who did extraordinary things with that orchestra, as can be heard with his delightful concert remarks on their Naxos CDs.

    Tintner’s magic held even in New Zealand, Ireland, Scotland, Australia, and Canada as CBC/Naxos recordings attest. His Bruckner cycle stands with the best, surpassed by only a few with far more resources and reputation,yet it won worldwide honors and recognition. His career recalls Jascha Horenstein’s in many ways.

  • Hornbill says:

    Opera houses, orchestras and concert halls the world over are doing this. It will be interesting to see the take-up rate, if figures ever get published. In the UK, if donations count as charitable contributions the government top some of them up through the byzantine Gift Aid system. In other countries they may be tax deductible for the donor which the concert ticket almost certainly won’t have been.

    It will also be interesting to see how far donations are used to fund fixed costs of the institutions and how much for freelance musicians, singers and production folk. I worry that the freelancers might not get a fair share, and they’re most likely the ones who’ll be left near destitute.

  • Victor Yampolsky says:

    My heart is full of deep respect, love and admiration for the orchestra supporters in Halifax. It speaks volumes about quality of society and community and rich cultural traditions in Nova Scotia! Victor Yampolsky

  • Edgare Self says:

    Mr. Yampolsky, an eloquent statement of support for the Halifax Nova Scotians and their orchestra,with which I assume you have some connection. Your concerts at Northwestern University are some of the finest I heard in the Chicago area, with a Shostakovich Eleventh the peer of CSO performances downtown. I remember your story of going with your father to the premiere. My friends and the enthusiastic young student audience agreed it was the best we had ever heard, likewise a Mahler Third, Saludos!