Major endowment for CBSO chamber music programme

City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra has received a major financial boost after board member John Osborn donated GBP100,000 (€135,000) to its endowment.

The money, which is being matched by Arts Council England (ACE), will be channeled into the Osborn Chamber Music Programme, a group that showcases the individual talents of CBSO’s players.

Osborn, who has served on the CBSO board since 2012, said: ‘I am delighted to be able to support this particular strand of the CBSO’s work and I hope this might also encourage others to become similarly involved in the long-term support of this outstanding Orchestra.’

The donation comes at a critical time for CBSO, whose public funding has declined by 24 percent in real terms since 2010. As a result, the orchestra has organised an endowment drive and hopes to raise GBP1 million (€1.35m) before July 2015.

Interest earned on Osborn’s donation will first go towards funding an annual series of 20 lunchtime concerts titled Centre Stage at CBSO Centre.

‘All arts bodies are feeling the financial pinch and belts are being tightened,’ concluded Osborn, ‘we have to support them if we want to keep them.’