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Cleveland Orchestra GM named CEO of Indianapolis Symphony

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The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra announced Wednesday that it has named Gary Ginstling as its new CEO.

Ginstling, 46, will leave a job as general manager of The Cleveland Orchestra to begin work in Indianapolis on March 18.

ISO CEO Gary Gistling mug shotGinstling

He replaces Simon Crookall, who abruptly resigned in February 2012. Chief Financial Officer Jackie Groth has served as the interim CEO.

Before working in Cleveland, Ginstling was director of communications and external affairs for the San Francisco Symphony, and executive director for the Berkeley Symphony Orchestra.

A clarinetist and New Jersey native, Ginstling earned a MBA at the Anderson School of Business at UCLA. He also has a master's of music degree from the Juilliard School and a Bachelor of Arts, with magna cum laude honors, from Yale University.

His musical experience includes performing with the San Francisco Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the New West Symphony in Ventura County, Calif., where he was principal clarinetist for 12 seasons.

He has his work cut out for him in Indianapolis, where ISO is working to broaden its appeal beyond its core audience. The symphony successfully raised $8.5 million in less than three months—more than it typically raises in a year—to lock in a long-term contract with its union musicians after a fall lockout jeopardized the current performance season.

ISO executives have trimmed the not-for-profit's budget—including $11.5 million in concessions from the musicians' union over the next five years—to slow draws from its diminishing endowment.

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  • Maybe There's Hope Yet.
    Hmmmmm....they actually hired someone that appears qualified to run things. I don't know which predominates - joy or abject surprise. We can only hope that this will be followed by a qualified Marketing Director (something the symphony hasn't had for close to a decade if not longer) and a heavy hitter Development person. Reason for hope...someone who understands that a musician is more than a liability on a profit & loss sheet. Now, if they could only replace the self-aggrandizing preeners on the board with equally qualified stewards. I can't believe I'm saying this but....bravo!

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