March 29, 2014 by Maggie Clegg
The Stratford Festival is celebrating a huge success under their new leadership. With Artistic Director Antoni Cimolino and Executive Director Anita Gaffney at the helm, the 2013 season saw increased attendance and reduced expenses, resulting in a surplus of 1.4 million dollars. Ticket sales were strengthened by new programming and marketing initiatives, which included the Stratford Festival Forum, the Stratford Direct Bus, and incentives such as two-for-one Tuesdays, while demand for tickets led to the extension of five productions. In all, ticket sales were up by 11 per cent or 50,000 patrons over the year before, the largest percentage increase since 1999. Revenue was up 5 per cent for a total of 57.1 million dollars, while expenses were slashed by 3.5 per cent thanks to an extremely effective cost management strategy. Also at the Annual General Meeting, Cimolino and Gaffney announced Stratford@Play, the Festival’s film project which will see the capture of an estimated three productions each season. They can then be distributed through cinemas, television, on-demand, and on DVD. The films will also be made available to schools and will be accompanied by digital study guides. The 2014 season of the Stratford Festival will run from April 21 to October 12.
Canopy Arts Desk
Tammy Hampel (Isaacson)
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