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Gifts bolster Charlotte Symphony's future

http://66.225.205.104/LM20091223.mp3

The Charlotte Symphony says its latest gift puts it in reach of a balanced budget and a stable financial future. WFAE's Lisa Miller has more: The symphony has been dealing with deficits for several years. This year the gap was estimated at $1.8 million. In August, Sandra and Leon Levine pledged $500,000 if the symphony could raise the same amount by the end of the year. The symphony's director, Jonathan Martin says the orchestra has made its goal which guarantees it a million dollar boost. "It came from 10-year-old kids who decided to run a garage sale and give literally $5 checks to the Charlotte Symphony all the way up to 6 figure gifts from philanthropic leaders," says Martin. Martin says the symphony's strategy to gain its financial footing includes expanding its base of givers at a time when companies are tightening their spending. He says the symphony is extremely close to meeting this year's $1.8 million fundraising goal which would likely mean extra money from the Arts and Science Council. This may not be the end of the symphony's troubles. Lately tickets sales have been up, but even with several big gifts factored in symphony officials still must raise about $2 million over the next five years to ensure the orchestra's future.