February 2019

#SOchats with Naomi  
Hello and welcome to our February SOchats. the first SOchats of the new year.  I’m Naomi Chaitkin Nimmo, the Executive Director.  We started this monthly chat room so we can answer your questions and talk about the orchestra and the response has been great!  Please keep the comments and questions coming. Thanks.
Q: Why do you need donations from the Annual Gift Campaign if you sell out your season in season tickets?
A: Because we keep our ticket prices low, the amount we receive from ticket sales equals only half of the expenses for the season. To fill that gap, we rely on individuals, corporations, foundations and government entities for donations. For nonprofit performing arts organizations, 50% earned revenue (money received for fulfilling the mission) ratio is considered ideal. Most do not achieve this. So we rely on your generosity to keep us up and running. If you are interested in seeing our financial statements or tax returns, please let us know. They are open to the public.
Q: What is the deadline for sending my Annual Gift Campaign donation to you?
A:There is no deadline. We are thrilled to accept your donation for any amount at any time.
Click here to donate to the Annual Gift Campaign on-line:  Donate on-line
Click here to download the Annual Gift Campaign form to be mailed in:  Download form
To read previous #SOchats please click here
Jokes of the Month
Why did Coca Cola’s recycling plant stop its giving program? It was soda-pressing.

 How often do pool lifeguards donate to charity?
It deep-ends.  
 I won $3 million on the lottery this weekend so I decided to donate a quarter of it to charity. Now I have $2,999,999.75.
Interviews with the Musicians
Cindy Helton
Cindy Helton
I’m a native South Carolinian, born in Marion, SC. I grew up and also lived a number of my adult years in North Charleston.
I’m married to John, who was in the Navy and stationed in Charleston when we met and married. We’re a career military family, with John serving in the Navy and then the Coast Guard before retiring in 2011. In addition to SC, we have called Virginia, Michigan, Maine, Puerto Rico, Maryland, and North Carolina home. We have two sons, Richard who is in the Coast Guard, and Brad (aka James) who is a counselor at Beech Hill Elementary School. We also have two lovely daughters-in-law, Emma and Kelsie, and four grandchildren who make our hearts smile, Adrianna, Jake, Nicholas, and Leah. John is now fully retired, after teaching elementary school post-Coast Guard, and we have relocated to be near parents – thanks Mom for driving me all over creation as a child for rehearsals and concerts, long before GPS – and extended family.
I’m a graduate of Trident Technical College. I’ve had a great career being wife to John and mother to Richard and Brad, volunteering in various capacities with spouses clubs, schools, sports teams, Scouts, church, and others. Though the hours were long, the rewards continue to be great.
I play viola in the SO and currently serve as the lower strings section representative. I’ve previously served as lower strings representative, SO president, SO board member, and worked as office assistant in the SO office. John is a wonderful help to me and SO, volunteering as an usher, helping clear the stage after concerts, or whatever he’s asked to do.
I chose viola because I prefer the lower mellow range of the instrument to the higher range of the violin. Well, that’s part of the reason. I walked to school every day, and a cello is bigger and heavier to carry than a viola. Plus, there was a cute guy in the grade ahead of me who played viola.
What do I like best about SO? There are so many things I like about this group! I like the mission statement of the group, that we get to live out that mission statement – it’s not merely pretty words on a page. I like the camaraderie among the group, the teamwork, the growth I’ve personally experienced, and the growth of the group as a whole. I like that we have an amazing group of people who support us – our staff, our Board, our concert volunteers, the Friends, community partners, sponsors, donors, and audience members. I could go on and on, but I think what I like most is the total SO package.
If I could play any other instrument I would choose the cello. If I could choose two I would choose cello and French horn, both so beautiful alone or in a group.
Besides music my favorite things to do are spending time with my family, traveling with John, and photographing our travels and our backyard birds.