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November 18, 2018

IN ITS FOURTH YEAR, DR. PHILLIPS CENTER POSTS DOUBLE-DIGIT GROWTH IN OPERATING REVENUE


— Arts Center Also Grew Attendance, Performances and Community Support, and Received Venue Excellence and Service Awards — 

— International Venue Excellence Award Spotlighted Center’s  Operational Acumen — 

ORLANDO, Fla. (October 26, 2018) — From July 2017 to June 2018, the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts experienced a 10 percent, year-over-year increase in operating revenue earned from the shows and events it presents. The strong results cap four years of growth in operating revenue, now up 48 percent since the arts center opened in November 2014. 

“It’s remarkable for a start-up to achieve such strong financial results,” said Jim Pugh, chair of the Dr. Phillips Center, and chair and CEO of Epoch Residential. 


“The operating team has essentially gone from zero to 60 in two seconds flat,” he said. “They’ve hit their targets and grown revenue each and every year, and are truly delivering on their core community mission. As a board, we are pleased and proud of their accomplishments.”

A newly released annual report available at drphillipscenter.org/pressroom, outlines the arts center’s 2017/2018 fiscal year, during which the team: 

  • raised $7.9 million in corporate and private donations, which includes $4.8 million for the construction of Steinmetz Hall and The Green Room, and $3.1 million for the arts center’s annual fund;
  • presented 440 total performances, including 130 local arts and community events that featured 14 genres and 16 different languages;  
  • hosted 634,000 guests, marking the fourth straight year of attendance growth; 
  • contributed $3 million in value to the community by off-setting rental fees for community arts groups; delivering educational programming in schools and through the Florida Hospital School of the Arts; awarding student scholarships; and providing discounted tickets to students, veterans and not-for-profit groups;  
  • activated more than 300 volunteers who, as docents, ushers and guest service representatives, gave nearly 22,000 hours of time; and 
  • played a key economic role in downtown Orlando and Central Florida, contributing more than $200 million in annual economic impact from show and consumer spending, driving the construction of a new $604 million concert hall and employing 200 full-time associates. 
The arts center also received a number of awards and accolades, including the 2018 Venue Excellence Award from the International Association of Venue Managers. Dr. Phillips Center was selected first among 133 IAVM performing arts center members from around the world, and was recognized for its operational excellence, safety and security, team building and service to the community. 

Also last year, TripAdvisor awarded the arts center a Certificate of Excellence; Playground Magazine named it the number one performing arts venue; and Orlando Magazine named the arts center first for local live music venues. 

“In many ways, we hit our stride this year,” said President Kathy Ramsberger, who attributes the arts center’s success to its operating as a business enterprise, focusing on earned income while earmarking annual contributions to mission and communitybased support.

“We’re taking an aggressive approach to programming our theaters, including selfpresenting an increasing number of shows, which increases our revenue margins,” she said. “We’re also committed to booking entertainment that appeals to a wide variety of tastes, ages and ethnicities, up to and including curating and presenting our own programming. 

“It’s an exciting time to be at the Dr. Phillips Center.”   

About Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts
Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts is a private, not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization operating the state-of-the-art performing arts center in downtown Orlando, Fla. With its opening in November 2014, the arts center has become a gathering place for creativity and discovery, and a vibrant urban destination where artists, audiences and students come to experience, explore and learn. The two-block community destination features the 2,700-seat Walt Disney Theater, 300-seat Alexis & Jim Pugh Theater, Seneff Arts Plaza, Florida Hospital School of the Arts, the DeVos Family Room and other event rental spaces. Under construction is Steinmetz Hall, a 1,700seat acoustical theater, along with rehearsal, classroom, office space and commercial development spaces. Dr. Phillips Center collaborates with the City of Orlando, Orange County, the City of Winter Park, the State of Florida and generous donors.