CWSO Spotlight: Musical Mavens

Eleven women forge a new path in concert sponsorship

Eleven women forge a new path in concert sponsorship

In a time when arts funding is limited (arts and culture funding is down one billion dollars from 2017 to 2018), and corporate sponsorship has decreased due to local corporations being sold to larger out-of-town entities, CWSO’s board of directors has been tasked with getting creative in finding ways to sustain the 71-year legacy of the orchestra.  With ticket sales covering about 25% of the orchestra’s expenses, one can see why orchestras around the country have been struggling. 

Sue Buck, past president of CWSO’s board, is leading one creative approach. She spends a fair amount of time in Door County and often attends the Peninsula Music Festival. She noticed that the event was sponsored by three women, Bibs, Marge, and Sarah.  She learned that for many seasons this trio of women sponsored one concert every year and were well-known patrons and volunteers at the festival. Sue thought if these three ladies could sponsor a concert, why couldn’t a group of women in Stevens Point form a consortium and pool resources to sponsor a CWSO concert?  And from this thought, Musical Mavens was born.

Musical Mavens started with one generous pledge of $1000, and has grown to include eleven women who together have raised $5000 to support the April “Ode to Unity” concert.  These women will be recognized at a special event at the Scarabocchio Museum, but more importantly, they are ensuring that the power and performance of live music by the CWSO will continue.

*If you are interested in becoming part of this group, please reach out to Executive Director, Mara Prausa.

Photo by John Hartman

Top row: Anna Gresch, Liz Kammer, Jeanne Herder, Diane Witte, Kathy Trachte,

Middle row: Sue Buck, Patty Luessenhop

Front row: Amy Bakken, Susan Gingrasso, MaryBeth Slezak, (Not Pictured) Marg Coker-Nelson