Dayton Performing Arts Alliance Logo

Dayton Performing Arts Alliance Celebrates a Second Season with a Signature Success

Second Annual Meeting Announces Growth in Revenue and Attendance, New Board Members

Angela Whitehead
Interim Communications & Media Manager
Dayton Performing Arts Alliance
Dayton Ballet / Dayton Opera / Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra
126 N. Main St., Suite 210, Dayton OH 45402
O: (937) 224-3521 x 1138  F: (937) 223-9189

DAYTON OH (July 16, 2014) -- The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance (DPAA) held its second Annual Meeting on Thursday, June 19, 2014 at Dayton Racquet Club. On July 1, 2014, the classical arts organization, comprising Dayton Ballet, Dayton Opera and Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, celebrated the second anniversary of the historic merger of these three art forms into one operating entity, the first and only merger of its kind in the United States to date.

2013-2014 Highlights

The 2013-2014 Signature Season marked the first season for the DPAA that was planned and executed from the start in this new collaborative model. Over 90,000 people attended 77 performances in a year that was bookended by two fantastic Signature Events, combining the forces of all three powerful art forms, in the Season Opening Spectacular in September and Aida in May.

Highlights from the 2013-2014 season include a brand-new production of The Nutcracker, a significant collaboration with University of Dayton’s “Rites, Rights, Writes” Project centered around Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring, a marvelous production of Hansel and Gretel that included collaborations with Dayton Ballet II and Zoot Theatre Company, a ballet season that included both company and world premieres, a SuperPops Broadway collaboration with Human Race Theatre Company, and an inspiring performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 to close the Philharmonic classical season.

As a mark of success of this unique collaboration of art forms, both ticket sales and contributed revenue for the DPAA have continued to increase from the prior year. This season thus marks the second year that DPAA has improved revenue year-over-year as a merged entity. Additionally, the merged organization continues to find operational efficiencies and decrease overhead costs, both in real dollars and as a percentage of revenue.

2013-2014 Awards

Two key awards of note were presented to the DPAA during the 2013-2014 Signature Season. In June, DPAA was named a winner of the inaugural 2014 Innovation Index Awards in the category of Service to Society from the Dayton Business Journal. The Innovative Index Awards were designed to highlight the best individuals, teams and companies in the Dayton area that have discovered innovative approaches and solutions to fuel the region’s economic engine. Secondly, this past May, Dayton Philharmonic Artistic Director and Conductor Neal Gittleman received the distinguished 2014 Governor’s Award for the Arts. Maestro Gittleman received the award for Community Development and Participation, recognizing his extraordinary 20 years as Artistic Director and Conductor for the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra and his outstanding commitment to community in Dayton.

Important National Grant

In 2013, the DPAA was one of five organizations nationally to receive a “Music Alive” grant from New Music USA and the League of American Orchestras. As a result, Stella Sung has joined DPAA as Composer-in-Residence and is working with Dayton Ballet Artistic Director Karen Russo Burke on a brand-new ballet, debuting in March 2015, which will be the first public outcome of this significant composer residency grant. Ms. Sung will be working with all three Artistic Directors to present additional new works over the next two years.

2013-2014 Accomplishments

Major accomplishments by the DPAA during the 2013-2014 Signature Season have set the stage for ongoing success. A new three-year strategic plan has been created, under the leadership of Board of Trustees Chair Craig Jennings and DPAA President and CEO Paul Helfrich. Execution of this plan will be a priority for all members of this merger for continued growth and success of the DPAA. As a mark of the smooth transition into a merged organization, the DPAA negotiated a new three-year agreement with the American Federation of Musicians in just two days. While many arts organizations are struggling and even failing in the area of contract negotiations, Dayton continues to exemplify the importance of collaboration and partnership for arts organizations to survive and thrive in our communities today.

Acclaimed Education Programs

Equally as important to the prosperity of the arts is the focus on educating young people of the value and enjoyment of the arts. As a result of the DPAA’s nationally-recognized education programs, over 69,000 young people in the Miami Valley benefited from DPAA programs, such as the Dayton Ballet School, Q the Music, Opera on the Road, and Magic Carpet Concerts. As a sampling of the wide-ranging education programs offered by the DPAA, five DPO ensembles presented 240 performances in area schools, 24 DPO musicians presented a total of 666 cross-curricular lessons prepared with classroom teachers from eight partner schools, and Q the Music completed its second year with 36 students who presented six concerts and a Seminario with six other El Sistema-inspired programs. Education of area youth will remain a top priority for DPAA going forward.

New Board of Trustee Officers and DPAA Staffing

The DPAA annual meeting was led by Chair of the DPAA Board Craig Jennings and attended by Board and Advisory Group members and staff. Jennings introduced Dayton Philharmonic Artistic Director Neal Gittleman, Dayton Ballet Artistic Director Karen Russo Burke, and Dayton Opera Artistic Director Thomas Bankston to give their reports and highlight the season’s productions. DPAA President and CEO Paul Helfrich delivered his President’s Remarks. Additionally, changes to the Board of Trustees were announced.

The following individuals were elected to a two-year term as members of the Board of Trustees: William Henry Caldwell, Jan Culver, David Dickerson, Vernon Fernandes, Rick Holley, Alan Kimbrough, Franklin Lewis, Barbara Lurie, Pat McDonald, Jarrod McNaughton, Milt Ross, and Dianne Trentman.

Officers for the Board of Trustees were elected for the 2014-15 season as follows: Rebecca Appenzeller, Chair; Jan Culver, Vice Chair; Carol Warner, Treasurer; Annette Salsman, Secretary; Dianne Trentman, Assistant Treasurer; Laura Nyquist, Assistant Secretary.

The following outgoing members of the Board of Trustees were thanked for their service and each presented with a memento of their time with the DPAA: Craig Brown, Wendy Campbell, Dick DeLon, Patti Demirjian, Margaret Dunn, Steve Hinshaw, Wendy Hites, Craig Jennings, Beverly Morris Knapp, David McElwee, Jenell Ross, and Jeremy Winston.

Craig Brown, Dick DeLon, and Craig Jennings were further recognized by being nominated and elected as the first Honorary Trustees of the Dayton Performing Arts Alliance.

To better position the organization to achieve 2014-2015 goals, DPAA reorganized internal staff in both Marketing and Development and made a number of key hires over the last few months. The reorganized Development team, under the continued leadership of Laura Fike, and the reorganized Marketing team, under the continued leadership of Dave Bukvic, will position DPAA for future success in meeting annual revenue goals.

2014-2015 New Horizons Season Kick-off

The 2014-2015 New Horizons Season of the DPAA will begin with the Season Opening Spectacular on September 20 and 21, 2014 at the Schuster Center. All three art forms will join forces to present a bold and wide-ranging program entitled “Russian Panorama”. In 2014-2015, the DPAA will present 76 performances at four different venues: Schuster Center, Victoria Theatre, Dayton Art Institute, and Westminster Presbyterian Church. Additional community outreach and education programs are also scheduled.


About the Dayton Performing Arts Alliance

The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance was formed in July 2012 as the result of a groundbreaking and innovative merger between the Dayton Ballet, the Dayton Opera, and the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra. Together, they are the largest performing arts organization in the community, offering a tremendous variety of performance and education programs and setting a new standard for artistic excellence. Dayton Performing Arts Alliance performances are made possible in part by Montgomery County and Culture Works, the single largest source of community funds for the arts and culture in the Miami Valley. The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance also receives partial funding from the Ohio Arts Council, a state agency created to foster and encourage the development of the arts and to preserve Ohio's cultural heritage. Funding from the Ohio Arts Council is an investment of state tax dollars that promotes economic growth, educational excellence, and cultural enrichment for all Ohio residents. The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance is proud to be one of five performing arts organizations in the country selected to receive a three-year "Music Alive" grant from New Music USA and the League of American Orchestras.

Event | Description


Visit Dayton Ballet
Visit Dayton Opera
Visit Dayton Philharmonic

© Dayton Performing Arts Alliance
All Rights Reserved
126 North Main Street, Suite 210
Dayton Ohio 45402

(937) 224-3521