Confusion swirling around Orchestra London's future following cancellation of two weekend shows
The future of Orchestra London remains up in the air as involved parties met Wednesday to iron out what can be done.
There was word Tuesday that Orchestra London had cancelled the remainder of its 2014-2015 concert season at Centennial Hall after a $350,000 private donation failed to materialize.
While Wednesday night's concert is still a go, late Wednesday afternoon, it was confirmed that scheduled concerts this weekend have been cancelled by Orchestra London.
The shows include two 'A Very Elvis Christmas' performances set for Friday and Saturday.
But the union and Orchestra London management are still meeting to discuss what could be done to prevent the cancellation.
Orchestra officials have also held an emergency meeting with top city hall staff regarding its financial challenges.
The organization is now turning to city hall for relief.
"I believe the community of London wants to have a full time professional orchestra, it will require the support of the community to continue on given the loss of this large gift," says Joe Swan, the orchestra's executive director.
Next week, Swan will ask city council for an immediate advance of about half of the $500,000 annual grant provided by taxpayers.
With big expenses looming, Swan believes the advance would give time to restructure and in his words "right size" the organization which employs 56 musicians and additional support and technical staff.
"We have a payroll which is due this week and that's what we are talking about in getting the support of the community to make that happen," says Swan.
Mayor Matt Brown says he supports a sustainable arts community but likely won't support the advance.
"I'm having a difficult time thinking of a circumstance where I would be supportive of providing even more subsidy in 2014 to this organization. We already provide a significant amount."
Brown adds that key financial background information that would give a clear picture of the orchestra's finances haven't even crossed his desk yet.
"Each year we expect audited financial statements to come forward, at this point there has been a delay, I'll be asking for that information," says Brown.
In 2009, city hall provided a financial bail-out to the organization and has been providing a $500,000 annual grant to support its operations.