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It was announced last week that Christopher Bailey is to leave Burberry after 17 years, and it’s all change at home, too.
Bailey, 46, who turned Burberry from a dowdy maker of macs into a luxe brand, has put the Kensington villa he shares with his husband, the actor Simon Woods, 37, on the market for £19.85m.
Donations toward the million annual budget will hit a new high of .5 million.
Ticket sales, already a remarkably high percentage of income (45 percent), are up 2 percent.
The musicians fought back, accepting still more financial cuts but encouraged when the board was finally persuaded to seek a new conductor and a new management team. Negotiations are under way in earnest, with one leader of the musicians' team predicting there might be an agreement by the deadline or shortly after when the first concert of the season is held. Another long-deferred problem is the symphony’s way-too-small endowment of million.
(A rule of thumb is that an endowment ought to be three times the annual budget, or triple the current size.) This endowment is used as collateral against the million line of revolving credit the orchestra has with USB, and it is part of the reason that the institution is pinched for working capital.
Unity of purpose has long been absent from this troubled organization, and the hunger for a new vision and a new hope is intense.It also means that the orchestra must raise large sums of donations each year.For years, dating back to the opening of Benaroya Hall in 1998, the orchestra board has tried to increase the endowment substantially, but the campaign has never achieved lift-off.The west London pad, with seven bedrooms and a large garden, was bought from the financier and environmentalist Ben Goldsmith and his ex-wife, Kate Rothschild, in 2013.It looks like a good time for Bailey to release cash: as part of his decision to leave Burberry next year before his contract expires, he surrenders shares worth about £16m.
When Woods revealed that figure to me, I was both stunned at the size and also that the symphony (for years a fortress of guarded information) would come clean.