Executive Director's Report
General and Admin
- Cash flow: Barring any significant, negative surprises, cash flow looks OK through the end of the fiscal year. As we discussed last month, the fall months look challenging – I will provide updated information on Monday, as I am making an effort to align the cash flow and an early version of the FY19 budget, completed midweek. Singers and staff continue to focus on revenue-generating opportunities.
- Budget: I’ve shared an early draft of the FY19 budget with the finance committee and look forward to improving it over the coming months. Although it is early in the process and many things could change, the budget is somewhat more encouraging than cash flow, suggesting that the challenges this fall are tied to the timing of revenue.
- NEA: The NEA has pledged $25,000 (booked this year, for activities next year), an increase of $5,000 over last year.
- Surdna Foundation: We received an unsolicited grant of $5,000 at the recommendation of one of the Foundation’s trustees, who has a Westminster connection.
- Donor stewardship and baseball: Cantus will host a donor stewardship event in Target Field’s charity suite on July 6 (at the Minnesota Twins’ game against the Orioles). We have arranged for Cantus to sing the National Anthem that evening.
- Major gifts: Jeff, Wendy, Joey, and I met earlier this month to discuss prospective major donors; Joey and I are creating strategies for tailored, targeted requests this summer and fall, ideally focused on the positive things on the horizon (25th anniversary, etc.).
General and Admin
- Visa: We will have some turnover in the ensemble over the summer. One of the talented singers the ensemble selected for next year is a Mexican citizen. We are currently working with an immigration attorney to secure a P-1B visa; although Cantus is the sponsor, the applicant covers attorney and filing fees for this visa.
- Westminster: We are currently renegotiating details of our in-kind partnership.
- Live recording: Cantus will release a live recording of For the Beauty of the Earth. This is a special limited-time-only offer, and this recording won’t be in the permanent mix with studio recordings. Response has been positive, and we have sold more than 50 albums (as of Friday afternoon).
- Blizzard: We proceeded with the concert at the Ordway last Saturday (April 14), and American Public Media recorded for later broadcast. Thank you to the singers and 34 audience members who braved the weather; Kelsey, who transferred (quite literally) hundreds of patrons’ tickets to alternate dates; and Joey, who ensured we still met and exceeded our revenue target for the spring series despite a winter storm.