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December 05, 2014

After Nearly Closing, San Diego Opera in Solid Fiscal Shape

The San Diego Opera, which was slated to close down in the spring before it was rescued by a leadership shakeup and an emergency funding campaign, ended the last fiscal year with stable finances, U-T San Diego reports.

Audited financial statements showed an operating shortfall of $52,067 on expenses of $15.9-million for the 2013-14 season. The deficit topped $370,000 the year before, even though the opera had used $1-million from a reserve fund for operating costs. It did not have to tap the fund this past season, which saw ticket sales drop slightly but donations rise significantly.

The reserve fund now stands at $2.3-million. "There were so many naysayers who said that money would be gone. We are quite proud we were able to keep that in place," said Keith Fisher, the opera’s chief operating officer. The then-board voted in March to close the company on expectation of rough financial seas ahead, triggering a leadership battle that saw half the board depart and the opera's management replaced.