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July 26, 2010; Source: The Oregonian | You do what you gotta do. With the economy still in flux, many organizations have wisely opted to stem any leaks that would drain reserves or otherwise weaken future prospects. Accordingly, four of five of the major performing arts groups in Portland, Oregon, ended their respective 2010 fiscal years in the black.

The Oregonian reports that by cutting salaries “and a range of other expenses,” the Oregon Symphony, Portland Opera, Portland Center Stage, and Oregon Ballet Theatre managed to stay “out of trouble in the wake of the recession.” One group, White Bird Dance, which increased its budget slightly, ended 2010 with a $6,000 deficit. They symphony, which cut $1 million by reducing salaries, furloughing staff, and paying less for guest artists, balanced its budget for the first time in three years—and the fourth in 20.

Some of the groups also credit increased ticket sales for helping bring in additional revenue at the same time they were skimming expenditures. Portland Center Stage, in particular, broke attendance records for its theatrical performances, which the group said was due to positive word of mouth and effective use of social media.—Bruce Trachtenberg