PHILADELPHIA — The world-renowned Philadelphia Orchestra, long considered one of the best in the nation, will be filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection – an apparent first in recent history for a major U.S. orchestra.
Board chairman Richard Worley said members made a nearly unanimous vote Saturday to file for reorganization in a federal bankruptcy court in Philadelphia after a “long meeting, thoughtful meeting, emotional meeting.”
“We’re running low on cash, we’re running a deficit, and we have to put ourselves in a position to attract investment funds to help us,” Worley told reporters.
Allison Vulgamore, president and chief executive officer, also cited a “tremendous decline” in audiences over the past five years.
Officials stressed, however, that concerts would go on as scheduled, including the evening’s performance of a Mahler symphony. And they said a revitalization campaign was planned to increase revenues by about two-thirds and bring in new art and audiences.