Another Orchestra Is in Trouble : Music: The Orange County Symphony of Garden Grove, $121,000 in debt, must raise $30,000 to hold its May 4 concert.


Two weeks after it was learned that a community orchestra in Santa Ana is in financial trouble, one here has announced a fiscal crisis. Officials of the Orange County Symphony of Garden Grove, formerly the Garden Grove Symphony, said Thursday that the organization is $121,000 in debt and needs $30,000 to hold its next concert on May 4 as scheduled.

If the money is not raised by April 30, board President Dick Hain said, the organization will consider filing for bankruptcy.

Hain said the orchestra, which changed its name last month in an effort to broaden its base of support, owes about $42,000 in payroll for musicians and staff; $51,000 in loans; $20,000 to outside vendors for such services as music score rental, and $8,000 to the Garden Grove Unified School District for the use of Don Wash Auditorium for concerts.

Hain said the orchestra hopes to raise the money by selling the remaining tickets to the May concert (of 1,200, only 300 have been sold), through individual and corporate donations and by obtaining “some help” from the Garden Grove City Council. Additionally, the group will hold a book fair and will raffle off a donated truck in October. Raffle tickets go on sale Monday.

The money problems stem from an accumulated deficit of $60,500 in direct costs and another $40,000 in indirect costs that date back to summer park concerts in 1985, the orchestra’s first year of operation, orchestra manager Yaakov Dvir-Djerassi said Thursday. He said the deficit was easy to cover for several years because of incoming subscription revenue, but finally caught up with the organization.


Also, the orchestra recently incurred a 10% penalty fee of about $500 for not paying its union musicians for a December concert within the specified time.

About 35 musicians--half the orchestra--belong to the Orange County Musicians Union, Local 7 of the American Federation of Musicians. Union President Frank Amoss said Thursday that its members have now been paid.