Change in BSO’s pricing about more than aisle seating

Posted Dec. 22, 2008, at 9:44 p.m.

BANGOR, Maine — The Bangor Symphony Orchestra earlier this year looked at its pricing structure and made some modifications, executive director David Whitehill said Monday, but they encompassed more than aisle seating.

The BSO went from six levels of pricing to four — $40, $32, $24 and $16 — after looking at the two halls where the orchestra will perform this season, he said. The symphony also determined which sections had been most popular in previous years and expanded some of the ticket prices in the top tier to the second tier, he said.

After performing two concerts and “The Nutcracker” at Peakes Auditorium in Bangor, the BSO will return to the Maine Center for the Arts at the University of Maine in Orono on Feb. 1, when the facility reopens after a major renovation. One of the big changes to the seating in the concert hall will be the creation of additional aisles.

In looking at where concertgoers sit in that facility, Whitehill said Monday, the price of tickets for the $40 center section were extended on either side of the aisles by between two and six seats, depending on how well they had sold in the past. Also, the first several rows of the center of the balcony were so popular that they are now $40.

The BSO also did not discount season subscriptions as it has in the past, Whitehill said,

“Season subscribers are our core audience,” he said. “They are the people most willing to support us and willing to pay a bit more for tickets.”

The BSO did offer an inexpensive season subscription rate for students of $60 for all six of its concerts. As a result, the executive director said, adult subscribers bought more season tickets for their children, so season subscriptions are up.

The Penobscot Theatre Company’s ticket pricing tiers are based on the day and time of performances, Scott R C Levy, producing artistic director, said Monday, with matinees costing the least and opening nights costing the most.

The only change Levy said he has made since taking the reins of the theater is to price the back four rows on the left and right sections at only $15 each for all performances.

jharrison@bangordailynews.net

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