North Carolina Symphony Society, Inc.

aka North Carolina Symphony   |   Raleigh, NC   |  www.ncsymphony.org

Mission

Our mission is to be North Carolina’s state orchestra—an orchestra achieving the highest standard of artistic quality and performance standards, and embracing our dual legacies of statewide service and music education.

Ruling year info

1945

President & CEO

Ms. Sandi M.A. Macdonald

Senior Vice President for Finance & Administration and CFO

Mr. Robert Schiller

Main address

3700 Glenwood Avenue, Suite 130

Raleigh, NC 27612 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

56-0556755

NTEE code info

Symphony Orchestras (A69)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Concerts and Community Engagement Events

Founded in 1932, the North Carolina Symphony (NCS) is a vital and honored component of North Carolina’s cultural life. Each year, its 300 concerts, education programs, and community engagement events are enjoyed by adults and schoolchildren in more than 90 North Carolina counties—in communities large and small, and in concert halls, auditoriums, gymnasiums, restaurants, clubs, and outdoor settings. The Symphony’s full-time professional musicians perform under the artistic leadership of Music Director Grant Llewellyn.

NCS’s state headquarters venue is the spectacular Meymandi Concert Hall at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Raleigh. The Symphony’s service across the state includes series in Chapel Hill, Fayetteville, New Bern, Southern Pines, and Wilmington, as well as the Summerfest series at its summer home, the outdoor Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary. NCS brings some of the world’s greatest talents to North Carolina and embraces home-state artists from classical musicians to bluegrass bands, creating live music experiences distinctive to North Carolina.

Population(s) Served

Committed to engaging students of all ages across North Carolina, NCS leads the most extensive education program of any symphony orchestra—serving nearly 70,000 students each year. In alignment with the curriculum set by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, the Symphony provides training and resources for teachers, sends small ensembles into classrooms, and presents full-orchestra Education Concerts that bring the fundamentals of music to life. Music Discovery for preschoolers combines music with storytelling, and at the middle and high school levels, students have opportunities to work directly with NCS artists and perform for NCS audiences.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Affiliations & memberships

American Symphony Orchestra League 1970

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of new donors

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

World Premier

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Concerts and Community Engagement Events

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Intensive Educational Residencies

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Music Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

People at Special NCS Young Porfessionals Events

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Concerts and Community Engagement Events

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Education Concerts

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Music Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Total Education Events

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Music Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Straight years with a balanced budget

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Other - describing something else

Direction of Success

Increasing

Percent Increase in First-Time Symphony-goers

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Concerts and Community Engagement Events

Type of Metric

Other - describing something else

Direction of Success

Increasing

First-time Symphony Goers

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Concerts and Community Engagement Events

Type of Metric

Other - describing something else

Direction of Success

Increasing

Students Reached through our education program

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Music Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Women composers & conductors featured

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Dollars Raised for Music Education at "Friends of Note" Luncheon

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Music Education

Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Percent Increase in Social Media Following

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Other - describing something else

Direction of Success

Increasing

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The North Carolina Symphony is:
Artistically inspirational, creative, and vibrant
Educationally essential and relevant
Financially strong and sound
Organizationally excellent and community-minded

1) Promote a culture of innovation, capitalizing on the growth of our state; advance the quality, reach, and impact of the North Carolina Symphony.
2) Support a vibrant institutional culture that positions the Symphony as a robust organization aligned to serve our mission in the community.
3) Advance education and community engagement with a deep understanding of key audience segments through which we can create opportunities to engage diverse populations.

The Symphony's season is comprised of diverse series and performances including its classical music series, pops series, pub series, a series of concerts designed specifically for young people and families, and an outdoor summer concert series. NCS’s state headquarters venue is the spectacular Meymandi Concert Hall at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Raleigh. The Symphony’s service across the state includes series in Chapel Hill, Fayetteville, New Bern, Southern Pines, and Wilmington, as well as the outdoor Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary. NCS brings some of the world’s greatest talents to North Carolina and embraces home-state artists from classical musicians to bluegrass bands, creating live music experiences distinctive to North Carolina.

Since its first education concert in 1946, NCS has performed for more than three million students across our state, bringing superior music education to North Carolinians as a valued addition to public and private school curricula. Last year, NCS reached over 70,000 school students, teachers and parents, bringing the live orchestral experience to large and small communities across the state. NCS music education materials are written in conjunction with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI), meeting the core curriculum requirement, and teachers undergo rigorous training to effectively deliver the lesson plans.

The curriculum in combination with the full-orchestra concert is – and will continue to be – the Symphony’s hallmark education program, reaching the largest number of students, teachers and parents. However, our additional programming allows us to offer valuable learning experiences to students of all ages and in schools and settings that are not conducive to the full orchestra concert. These programs are:

• Ensembles in the Schools - Interactive performance by small groups of NCS musicians
• Music Discovery – music and literacy curriculum for preschoolers; targeted participants include public libraries, museums and Head Start programs
• Instrument Zoo – hands-on and interactive demonstrations by Symphony musicians and staff; may be supplemental to other Symphony programs such as Young Peoples Concerts and Summerfest concerts, or scheduled as stand-alone educational events; adaptable to all ages
• Open Rehearsals – students observe the Symphony at work, then meet the conductors and artists during post-rehearsal interactive Q&A session; middle and high school students
• Ovations – 30-minute performances for Symphony concertgoers prior to Classical performances; middle and high school students and some community groups
• Master Classes – young musicians work directly with NCS musicians and guest artists in one-on-one and small-group lessons, where they can hone their technique, refine their repertoire, and learn to bring artistry to their music making.

Staging Star Soloists: The Symphony brings some of the world’s greatest soloists to our stages — including violinists Joshua Bell and Augustin Hadelich, pianist Ingrid Fliter, Broadway veteran Michael Cavanaugh, and pop/rock star Ben Folds.

Giving Voice to New Music: In eight performances — including those given on our tour of Western North Carolina — the Symphony and the Cherokee Chamber Singers shared a message of hope through the world premiere of composer William Brittelle’s Si Otsedoha (We’re Still Here). The new work featured text written by the high school students of the Cherokee Chamber Singers, reflecting on their cultural identity; it was commissioned by NCS and supported by the Cherokee Preservation Foundation. NCS co-commissioned a new piano concerto by composer Caroline Shaw, performed by pianist Jonathan Biss. Watermark was programmed together with the work that served as its inspiration, Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3

Partnering with Neighbors: In our third collaboration with the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, projected imagery of water from North Carolina locales accompanied the Symphony performing sea-inspired works by Debussy and Sibelius. Concerts took place in both Raleigh and Wilmington. Joining museums and other organizations statewide as part of Lift Off NC — a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the moon landing — we put on a special space-themed program at UNC REX Healthcare Summerfest hosted by the Town of Cary, complete with activities with the Morehead Planetarium.

Creating an Artist Ambassadors Program: Supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, NCS launched our Artist Ambassadors initiative, inviting pianist Michelle Cann, composer Caroline Shaw, and cellist Zuill Bailey to share their expertise at educational and community events designed to make the arts inclusive and accessible.

Culminating Two Multi-Year Residencies: Our residencies in Sampson County (supported by the Simple Gifts Fund) and Cherokee (in partnership with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and supported by the Cherokee Preservation Foundation) proved what is possible when communities have frequent access to live music and professional musicians. In Sampson County, our three-year residency culminated with band students performing alongside NCS musicians in a community concert. A 12th grade bassoonist shared that her opportunities with NCS over the past three years inspired her to pursue a music education degree, while an 8th grade horn player noted that the Symphony taught her self-expression and the value of hard work. In Cherokee, the capstone of our three-year residency was an eight-concert tour featuring Cherokee choral students in Si Otsedoha (We’re Still Here). The students who sang and helped create the new work stated that their experiences with NCS gave them a sense of confidence and cultural pride.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Conversations,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

Financials

North Carolina Symphony Society, Inc.
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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North Carolina Symphony Society, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 4/28/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr. Don Davis

Raleigh

Mr. Joe Bastian

Chapel Hill

Dr. Wm. Charles Helton

Raleigh

Mr. Terry L. Stevens

Raleigh

Mrs. Ashley Matlock Perkinson

Raleigh

Ms. Sandi M.A. Macdonald

Raleigh

Ms. Deborah M. Aiken

Raleigh

Dr, Tim Altman

Laurinburg

Dr. Trude R. Bate

Cary

Ms. Denise S. Bennett

Raleigh

Mrs. Janie W. Bird

Raleigh

Mr. Jud Bowman

Durham

Ms. Patty Briguglio

Cary

Mr. Steve Burriss

Raleigh

Mr. Tim Clancy

Raleigh

The Honorable Roy Cooper

Raleigh

Mr. Jeffrey A. Corbett

Raleigh

Mr. Richard L. Daugherty

Raleigh

Mr. Keith Donahue

Raleigh

Dr. Robert N. Eby

Chapel Hill

Mr. Rick Gardner

Raleigh

Mr. Michael Gering

Raleigh

Mr. Mike Golden

Raleigh

Mr. Donald A. Haile

Raleigh

Mr. David Haines

Cary

Secretary, Susi H. Hamilton

Wilmington

Mrs. Elaine Bryant Hayes

Fayetteville

Mr. Richard E. Hinson

Chapel Hill

Mr. Kevin Howell

Raleigh

Mr. Michael P. Hughes

Raleigh

The Honorable Mark Johnson

Raleigh

Mr. L. Dwain Joyce

Fayetteville

Mrs. Cecelia Eckert Kennedy

Morrisville

Dr. Robert Lacin

Raleigh

Mr. Robert MacNeill, Jr.

Raleigh

Mr. Branford Marsalis

Durham

Mrs. Louise Miller

Cary

Mr. James Morgan

Raleigh

Mr. Graham Mosely

Wilmington

Mrs. Florence Peacock

Chapel Hill

Dr. Emily Mann Peck

Raleigh

Ms. Margaret Smedes Poyner

Raleigh

Dr. Ramachandra P. Reddy

Cary

Mr. Jason Smith

Raleigh

Mrs. Tracey Fodor Smith

Raleigh

Mr. David Sontag

Raleigh

Mrs. Linda J. Staunch

New Bern

Mr. M. Gray Styers, Jr.

Raleigh

Ms. Sandy Sully

Cary

Mrs. Jennie H. Wallace

Raleigh

Mr. Dereck Whittenburg

Raleigh

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Not applicable