Merger of Dayton Performing Arts Groups Launched With $1 Million in Gifts

The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance, a newly formed group that includes the Dayton Ballet, Dayton Opera, and Dayton Philharmonic, has announced lead gifts from local donors totaling $1.25 million.

Support for the merger of the three arts groups, believed to be the first of its kind in the country, includes a two-year, $500,000 gift from the Harry A. Toulmin, Jr., and Virginia B. Toulmin Fund of the Dayton Foundation and $500,000 over two years from an anonymous donor, with the possibility of an additional grant of $250,000 in year three. The new commitments will help the alliance manage costs associated with the merger's projected operating shortfalls until economies of scale are realized as well as provide support for new artistic initiatives.

"It took great foresight, courage, and leadership to engage in the complex due diligence process and pursue a common vision," said Michael Parks, president of the Dayton Foundation, which helped support the organizations and their boards through the sixteen-month-long discovery and implementation process. "We are thrilled with what this first-in-the-nation merger will mean for Greater Dayton. The Dayton Ballet, Opera, and Philharmonic are integral to the cultural health of our community, and this merger, this act of renewal, energizes our culture for generations to come."