As reported in the Oregonian today, a number of Portland/Vancouver area performing arts organizations have made available inexpensive $5 tickets to their events. This pilot program began in January 2011 and has exceeded expectations!
Here's a quote from the article:
"Some days when you're searching for work, you get told no, no, no," said (an unemployed patron). "It can get disillusioning. Listening to the music lifted me up out of my burden. I felt swept away."
The pilot program, "Music for All," is aimed at people with Oregon Trail Cards using the federal Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, formerly the Food Stamp Program. Participating groups included the Oregon Symphony, Portland Opera, Oregon Ballet Theatre and nine others.
The program proved so popular -- 1,410 people bought tickets-- organizers plan to bring it back in the fall.