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New Arts Alliance Launches In Dayton

It's been a tough couple of years on arts communities across the nation and in Dayton, a new collaboration is taking place. As Emily McCord reports for WYSO, The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance is the first merged philharmonic orchestra, ballet, and opera organization in the country.

One  example of how the new merger affects art patrons is package deals.  If you buy tickets for the Dayton philharmonic, now you'll also get a voucher to the ballet or the opera.  But a lot of the nuts and bolts to this new alliance comes in the structure. The three art forms will now share business and administrative costs. President and CEO Paul Helfrich says they had to do something because like many other arts organizations across the country, the ballet, opera and philharmonic were facing an uncertain future.

"All of us could see that unless some type of game changer came along, we were likely going to have to continue to further reduce programs, further reduce capacity and we didn't like the way that looked. So, we said let's take a look at doing something different," says Helfrich.

But Helfrich quick to point out what won't happen-that is the identities of the different forms will be lost in the mix. Helfrich says each will have its own artistic director and donors can still designate funds to their favorite group.