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Dallas Symphony Orchestra receives $3 million gift from Linda and Mitch Hart

HART FAMILY SUPPORT PAVES THE WAY FOR DSO’S EMERGENCE FROM A CHALLENGING YEAR FOR LIVE CONCERTS

Gift to be Recognized by Naming of Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center Lobby

DALLAS, TX (March 16, 2021) – The Dallas Symphony Orchestra (DSO) has received a significant gift from long-time DSO supporters and prominent Dallas business leaders Linda and Mitch Hart. This $3 million commitment is in addition to a previous $2 million campaign gift to the orchestra. In recognition of their extraordinary dedication to the DSO, the lobby of the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center has been named the Linda and Mitch Hart Lobby. In the midst of a world-wide pandemic, the Harts’ investment in the Dallas Symphony is a testament to their belief that music heals and inspires and is integral to quality education for the children of Dallas and that a great orchestra is the soul of a thriving Dallas arts community.

The Harts have contributed $10 million to the Dallas Symphony during their lifetime, and their latest generosity will propel the DSO’s $100 million Your DSO – Excite, Inspire, Engage campaign, forward.

“The past year has been devastating for the arts with a recent DFW survey putting losses in the sector at $95 million. This crucial gift during such a challenging period helps us build on our efforts to creatively serve our community and continue our vital work for the city,” said Kim Noltemy, Ross Perot President & CEO of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. “We are incredibly grateful for the leadership and devotion of the Harts, who have been instrumental to the success of the Dallas Symphony for decades. Linda and Mitch are among the most generous Dallas Symphony donors, and we are thrilled to be able to recognize them with the naming of the Lobby.”

“The DSO is incredibly fortunate to have such loyal and passionate supporters as Linda and Mitch Hart,” said Fabio Luisi, Louise W. & Edmund J. Kahn Music Director of the Dallas Symphony. “It is fitting that we recognize their support in the main gathering space of our building, as their generosity will help us as we work to emerge from this difficult time and welcome more of our community back to Meyerson.”

The Harts have been significant supporters of the Dallas Symphony for more than 30 years. Their generosity has led to the establishment of a Linda and Mitch Hart Domestic Touring Fund, Linda and Mitch Hart International Touring Fund, Linda and Mitch Hart Young Adult Education Fund, Linda and Mitch Hart Musicians’ Retirement Fund and the naming of the Hart Atrium and Hart Symphony Suites on the lower level of the Meyerson. Linda served as Chairman of the Dallas Symphony Association Board of Governors from 1997-2000 and as Vice Chair of the DSA Board of Governors from 2012-2013. In addition, she has been a member of the Dallas Symphony Foundation Board of Directors, an active member of the DSA Council of Past Chairs and she and Mitch served on the Meyerson Symphony Center 25th Anniversary Host Committee.

Linda Hart is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and the SMU Dedman School of Law. She is Vice Chairman, President and CEO of Hart Group, Inc. and former Chairman of Imation Corp. Ms. Hart is a Trustee of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, D.C., is a member of the Board and the Executive Committee of the New York Philharmonic, and also has been an active leader in the Dallas Citizens Council, Dallas Opera, International Women’s Forum-Dallas, the Greater Dallas Chamber of Commerce, the Texas National Research Laboratory Commission, the International Women’s Forum Leadership Foundation and the Dallas Women’s Foundation. Ms. Hart, who practiced corporate finance law, was a Visiting Professor at Stanford Law School and an outside consultant to the Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, D.C., is former Chairman and current ex officio member of the Legal Advisory Committee to the New York Stock Exchange and serves on a variety of corporate and civic boards.

Mitch Hart, Chairman of Hart Group, Inc. is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and served as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps. In 2017, Mr. Hart received the USNA’s Distinguished Graduate Award, the highest honor given by the Naval Academy to its graduates. He is Chairman of Hart Group, Inc., founding Director and former Chairman of Episcopal School of Dallas and a former Trustee and Trustee Emeritus of both Southern Methodist University and Duke University. In 1985, he endowed the Hart Leadership Program at Duke University’s Terry Sanford Institute of Public Policy, and he and Ms. Hart serve on the Institute’s Board. A member of World Presidents’ Organization, Chief Executives Organization and the Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America, he has served on numerous business and civic boards.

“The Dallas Symphony Orchestra is a cornerstone of Dallas’s culture and artistic history,” said Linda. “It is important for us to ensure its future for the next generation of patrons and to help nurture the youngest artists in Dallas.”

“We have been inspired by the new DSO leadership team which is transforming the organization,” said Mitch. “We are pleased to support the work of the Dallas Symphony, and we hope our gift will inspire others to take a closer look at the incredible momentum and groundbreaking work being done at the DSO.”

“The importance of connecting with one another in creative ways while supporting our community is felt now more than ever,” said Sanjiv Yajnik, DSA Chairman of the Board of Governors. “Your DSO – Excite, Inspire, Engage will expand access to the DSO’s inspiring musical performances and help the DSO impact the broadest possible audience in DFW and beyond. It is an honor to have Linda and Mitch’s support to bolster this initiative.”

ABOUT THE DALLAS SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
The Dallas Symphony Orchestra, under the leadership of Music Director Fabio Luisi, presents world-class orchestral music at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center, regarded as one of the top-ten rated concert halls. As the largest performing arts organization in the Southwest, the DSO is committed to inspiring the broadest possible audience with distinctive classical programs, inventive pops concerts and innovative multi-media presentations. In fulfilling its commitment to the community, the orchestra reaches more than 243,000 adults and children through performances, educational programs and community outreach initiatives annually. The DSO’s involvement with the City of Dallas and the surrounding region includes an award-winning multi-faceted educational program, community projects, popular parks concerts and youth programming.

During the pandemic, the Dallas Symphony was the first major U.S. orchestra safely to present socially distanced concerts with live audiences during the 2020/21 Season. Furthermore, the orchestra has offered more than 100 outdoor chamber concerts in neighborhoods throughout the Metroplex since the summer. The DSO continued online music lessons to more than 200 students as part of its Young Strings and Young Musicians programs. The DSO continued online music lessons to more than 200 students as part of its Young Strings and Young Musicians programs and increased its online dissemination of concerts through a newly designed website and on social media.

The DSO has a tradition dating back to 1900 and is a cornerstone of the unique, 118-acre Arts District in Downtown Dallas that is home to multiple performing arts venues, museums and parks; the largest district of its kind in the nation. The DSO is supported, in part, by funds from the Office of Arts & Culture, City of Dallas.

Media Contact:
Denise McGovern | Vice President of Communications, DSO
d.mcgovern@dalsym.com | 214.871.4024