Richardson Symphony Orchestra
Audience Development and Community Outreach Director
Founded in 1961, the Richardson Symphony Orchestra (RSO) has grown with the Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) metroplex and is recognized as one of the premier orchestras of the region. It is the resident symphony of the Charles W. Eisemann Center for Performing Arts and offers a variety of classical and pops concerts each season programmed to appeal to the varied audiences of the area. Throughout its history, the orchestra has been known for its innovative programming and as a showplace for brilliant up-and-coming talent. Many notable artists have made their DFW symphony debut with the RSO, including cellist Yo-Yo Ma, violinist Nadia Salerno-Sonnenberg, and pianist Behzod Abduraimov.
In addition to the critically acclaimed season performances, the Richardson Symphony is also widely regarded as a leader in education and community outreach programs. The Ann & Charles Eisemann International Young Artists Competition draws talented young performers from around the world each year. The orchestra is also actively involved in introducing classical music to the third-grade students at the Richardson Independent School District and in local private schools.
The upcoming 2023-2024 season marks Maestro Clay Couturiaux’s eleventh season as Music Director and Conductor of the RSO and his twenty-second year as Assistant Director of Orchestral Studies at the University of North Texas. Maestro Couturiaux has accumulated over two decades of experience conducting professional symphony orchestras and teaching at the university level. His career has taken him across the United States, Europe, and Asia, including concerts with the Milano Classica Orchestra da Camera of Milan, Italy and in Taipei with the National Taiwan Normal University Symphony Orchestra. Other professional conducting engagements include performances with the Abilene Philharmonic, Arkansas Symphony, Austin Symphony, Ballet Arlington (now Metropolitan Classical Ballet), East Texas Symphony Orchestra, Texas Chamber Orchestra, and Wichita Falls Symphony Orchestra.
The 2023-2024 season will open with Lili Boulanger’s vibrant D’un matin de printemps (On a Spring Morning), with soloist Lara St. John. Other highlights of the season include the American Landscapes Concert, the Holiday Classics Concert, Judy Collins, A Night at The Movies: Good vs. Evil, Stars of the Future Concert, and more. There are six subscription concerts, three youth concerts, and 15 small ensembles (string quartets or brass quintets) performing at a wide variety of events throughout the city during the next season.
The Richardson Symphony Orchestra is supported by a dedicated 21-member Board of Directors, the Richardson Symphony League, RSL Debutantes and Honor Guard, and other community volunteers, all of whom play a vital role in the success of the Richardson Symphony. The Symphony employs 75 core musicians and has a budget of approximately $750,000 for the fiscal year ending June 2024.
Richardson, Texas is an incorporated suburban city strategically located in an enviable position immediately north of Dallas in the Dallas-Ft. Worth metropolitan area, known as the Metroplex. The entire Metroplex is growing rapidly and is projected to pass Chicago in the next few years to become the 3rd largest metro area in the United States. Within the Metroplex, approximately 120,000 Richardson residents enjoy a diverse and inclusive smaller city with unusually robust resources. The City of Richardson has achieved the strongest financial ratings of AAA every year since 2009. The University of Texas at Dallas is primarily located in Richardson and has a student population of more than 30,000. Dallas College on the east border of Richardson serves more than 20,000 students. The Richardson business community provides extensive employment opportunities. Residents enjoy excellent apartment communities and residential neighborhoods, retail and dining options, parks, golf courses, highly rated public and private schools, hike, and bike trails, and 4 light rail transit stations with a 5th station to open in 2024, which will provide direct rail access to DFW Airport.
Sources: niche.com/places-to-live/search/best-cities; cor.net/government/awards-and-achievements
The Audience Development and Community Outreach Director (Director)’s goal is to increase attendance for the Richardson Symphony Orchestra’s concerts. The Director oversees subscription campaigns as well as the solicitation and analysis of patron data. The Director develops and executes strategies, programs, and events designed to deepen relationships with the greater community to ultimately produce longer-lasting engagement marked by additional ticket purchases and philanthropic contributions. The RSO is looking for exciting and dynamic long-haul efforts in community outreach. The Director will be expected to be highly active in speaking to organizations, making presentations to music groups in schools and local colleges, expanding Young Artists programs, encouraging attendance at RSO practice sessions when practical, and experimenting with new ideas such as streaming, multi-media, popup performances, ensemble bookings, orchestral backup for recording artists, to encourage participation in live music experiences.
Roles and Responsibilities
- Develop and execute programs for target database segments designed to increase earned revenue including, but not limited to, patron loyalty, subscriber retention, increased patron purchasing, moving single ticket buyers into larger purchases; and moving patrons along the continuum from first-time buyer to brand ambassador.
- Establish research methods, such as survey, opinion polls, or questionnaire, and design means for collecting data for projects as well as develop and conduct surveys and focus groups to analyze customer purchasing patterns, preferences, and the organization's image and marketing effectiveness.
- Research market conditions and conduct feasibility studies to determine market demand for existing and new products or services.
- Analyzes new and current data to develop new product offerings and research methods to help the organization meet its strategic goals through increased ticket and contributed revenue.
- Enhance the bond between patrons and the organization by developing behind-the-scenes experiences as well as subscriber events and special giveaways, working with the RSO’s Executive Director to execute these strategies.
Marketing and Analytics
- Develop and test strategies, in conjunction with staff, to connect with emerging audiences—students, new movers, young professionals, etc.
- Identify and define existing patron segments in database based on type of purchases, frequency of purchases, event attendance, and overall contributions to the organization.
- Develop creative concept and copy, in conjunction with the staff, executing and monitoring campaigns for all season packages and subscription efforts, while also overseeing the coordination of target lists.
- Explore programming solutions with the database administrator to test new subscription packages as well as streamline/troubleshoot existing subscription transactions.
Community Engagement and Patron Stewardship
- Demonstrate a visible presence, on behalf of the organization, highly active in speaking to organizations, making presentations to music groups, in schools and local colleges, expanding the Young Artists programs, encouraging attendance, as well as visibly attending Richardson Symphony concerts and events.
- Maintain the new audience initiative that reimagines presentational formats, building experiences that are appealing to new audiences while also measuring the results both in terms of the number of new audience members and the impact of the experience.
- Summarize findings and makes recommendations for action plans as needed and monitor subscription activity daily during renewal promotion season and preparing ongoing patron migration reports as well as weekly subscription sales reports.
- Gather, analyze, and compare competitor single ticket, subscription package pricing, and benefits structure to that of organization collecting market intelligence in order to examine and compile statistical data.
Traits and Characteristics
The Audience Development and Community Outreach Director will be a magnetic and vibrant leader with a resourceful and analytic mind who displays an enthusiasm for music and builds deep relationships within the community. As a goal-setter, they will ideate innovative ways to attract former and new audience members to the RSO to augment its role in the greater community and artistic landscape of Richardson, Texas.
Other key competencies include:
- Creativity, Innovation, and Goal Orientation – The vitality to create new approaches, designs, processes, technologies and/or systems to achieve the desired result, using analytics and metrics to measure progress.
- Planning and Organizing, Time and Priority Management – The ability to organize a variety of projects simultaneously, while prioritizing tasks.
- Customer Focus and Futuristic Thinking – The flexibility to work with a broad range of customers and stakeholders, improving the patron experience at the symphony, setting goals for projects that have not yet been actualized.
- Self-Starting – The capability to demonstrate initiative in defining, analyzing, and diagnosing key components of audience engagement and development.
The successful candidate will have a bachelor's degree or higher from a four-year college or university and a minimum of four years’ marketing experience in the performing arts sector. Audience development experience and a record of success will be required. Experience with ticketing databases such as Salesforce or Tessitura would be strongly preferred. The preferred candidate must have the ability to communicate subscription offers and benefits in a clear, concise, and appealing manner, as well as communicate research findings and make recommendations to management summaries. The aptitude to budget and forecast with accuracy and to calculate figures and amounts such as discounts, percentages, etc. is necessary for this role, as well as extensive Excel spreadsheet experience, including the ability to use graphs and charts effectively, working knowledge of Microsoft Office software and the ability to quickly learn and use new software. The selected professional for this position will have enthusiasm, joyful experimentation, and success in growing the audience for a performing arts organization, or comparable institution.
Compensation and Benefits
The Richardson Symphony Orchestra provides a competitive and equitable compensation package in the range of $70,000 to $85,000, with benefits that include paid time off and holidays and medical health insurance. Relocation assistance is available.
Applications and Inquiries
To submit a cover letter and resume with a summary of demonstrable accomplishments (electronic submissions preferred), please click here or visit artsconsulting.com/opensearches. For questions or general inquiries about this job opportunity, please contact:
Josyanne Roche, Vice President
324 South Wilmington Street, Suite 252
Raleigh, NC 27601-1847
Tel (888) 234.4236 Ext. 240
Consistent with our belief in the power of music and our mission, we believe that music is something that should be available and accessible to everyone. Therefore, the Richardson Symphony orchestra pledges a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. This commitment is a crucial aspect of our mission, not a mere gesture. Our efforts to this end are reflected throughout the organization, ensuring that the RSO is representative of and accessible to our entire community.
Click here for the downloadable PDF.