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New Board of Directors for Auckland Philharmonia

Media Release
16 October 2003

New Board of Directors for Auckland Philharmonia

The Auckland Philharmonia has substantially restructured its board and subsidiary committees in a major governance review.

Announcing the changes, Secretary of the Auckland Philharmonia Society, Brecon Carter, said the Society has now delegated responsibility to a Board of Directors composed equally of musicians and external directors, and chaired by an external independent director. Orchestral personnel and programming responsibilities will rest with the Music Director and musicians’ committees.

The external directors are Gregory Shanahan (Chairman), a partner of the national law firm Minter Ellison Rudd Watts, David Ross, a chartered accountant, company director and co-founder of the Rialto chain of cinemas and the Rialto Channel on Sky television, Janine Smith, a business adviser, former CEO, company director, and currently Deputy Chair of Airways Corporation, Prof. Douglas Sutton, Professor of Archaeology and former Dean of Arts at the University of Auckland, and Peter Wilson, ONZM, a chartered accountant and company director; chairman and trustee on a number of community, sport and charitable trusts. The Auckland Philharmonia musicians represented on the Board are Jonathan Baker, Principal Tuba, who took up the position in 1993 following study in the US, Brecon Carter, MNZM, Concertmaster Emeritus/First Violins, who has been with the orchestra since it began 23 years ago, and from 1980 until 1997 was Concertmaster, David Maunsell, a member of the Second Violins who has been with the orchestra since 1987, and Gordon Richards, Principal Clarinet, who emigrated from Canada in 1994 to take up the position with the orchestra.

This and other substantive changes have resulted from an extensive review and discussion by the Society members and their advisors. Those considerations have included reviewing successful international co-operative orchestras and recommended best practice in governance.

“The Auckland Philharmonia has achieved a spectacular history in terms of excellence, community outreach, obtaining sponsorship, and winning customer and critic commendation for its performances,” Carter said. “However, we’ve recognised that we cannot rest there. To be successful in artistic terms we needed to rethink our structure and processes, and that has included a thorough review of the board and management support platforms. The challenge now is to take the orchestra forward to a new level artistically in the next two decades. The aim is to keep the best of everything artistic, to retain our commercial and community support while striving to reach new levels of quality and artistic achievement, and overall, to help the country develop its New Zealand voice.”

The Auckland Philharmonia receives major funding from Creative New Zealand and a major grant from Auckland City.


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