Early Music Now Reports Record-Setting 30th Anniversary Season » Urban Milwaukee

Cuban Ensemble Ars Long de La Habana performing at the UWM Zelazo Center. Photo courtesy of Early Music Now.

Early Music Now has announced that draft financials for its 2016-2017 season indicates record ticket sales and individual support, exceeding the projected balanced budget of $320,000 with revenue of $360,939 and expenses of $343,677, for a surplus of $17,262. The net worth of this small non-profit organization has reached $594,918.

For the recently completed 30th Anniversary Season, ticket sales accounted for 25% of the revenue, with 40% of those sales reflecting full-season subscriptions, 20% from partial season subscriptions, and the remaining 40% coming from individual sales. Approximately half of the revenue came from individual donations, sponsorships, and fundraising activities. Foundation, corporate, government, and institutional support accounted for the remaining 25%.

The fiscal success of the organization is credited to excellent staff management and board oversight, signaled by a 2004 commitment to a goal of “forward funding,” which requires that sufficient unreserved funds be available to completely cover the expenses for each new season before that season is announced. That goal was achieved by the end of the 25th Anniversary Season, and has been maintained as a guiding financial policy. The organization has a Board Designated Reserve Fund and a fledgling Permanent Endowment Fund at the Greater Milwaukee Foundation, along with the Thallis Hoyt Drake Legacy Society honoring the organization’s founder.

EMN is the only music presenter in the Midwest and one of the few in the country that focuses exclusively on the regular presentation of world-class performers of Medieval, Renaissance, and early Baroque music in intriguing concerts and educational experiences that contribute to the continued vitality of the region’s cultural, educational, and economic sectors. Since its founding in 1986, Early Music Now has become widely known as one of the most creative and successful early music presenting organizations in the United States. In 2014, EMN’s growing reputation among early music scholars and aficionados was enhanced by the inclusion of two scheduled programs by the Baroque ensemble “Quicksilver” on the calendar for visitors attending the annual meeting of the American Musicological Society and the Society of Music Theory here in Milwaukee.

Governed by a diverse volunteer community board, and with a staff of two,…

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