At the COE’s launch concert in May 1981 David and Susie Sainsbury became two of the very first supporters of the fledgling Orchestra, and in funding our original promotional material they made it clear that they would continue to support us in the years ahead. When financial conditions in the music world deteriorated at the turn of the century, David and Susie stepped in to give the COE very substantial financial backing through their Gatsby Charitable Foundation which has become by far and away the most important and valuable supporter of the Orchestra to this day. Indeed, without Gatsby’s continuing generosity it would be difficult to create the exciting future plans we have in place. It is therefore highly appropriate that we acknowledge this support by giving a sole credit line in all our publicity as follows:

“The Chamber Orchestra of Europe
is supported by The Gatsby Charitable Foundation”

An additional component of substantial support for the Orchestra has been achieved by means of persuading foundations and individuals to support a number of the Principal positions. The most important of these are the Rupert Hughes Will Trust which has committed funds for the Principal Oboe and Flute positions over five years, The Underwood Trust which is supporting the Principal Trumpet position, and a good friend of the COE, Dasha Shenkman, who has agreed to support the Leader position over a period of years. We have also been fortunate to secure funding from Sir Siegmund Warburg’s Voluntary Settlement, the American Friends of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, the 35th Anniversary Friends, and an anonymous donor. The combination of those supporting eight of the twelve Principal positions has given a major boost to our annual resources and we are currently attempting to find benefactors for the remaining four positions.

Apart from the very significant funding we receive from The Gatsby Charitable Foundation and the ongoing funding of the eight Principal positions in the Orchestra, we have of course relied very heavily over the years on a multitude of British, European and American individuals who have been inspired to donate generously to our Friends organisation. For the future we see no realistic way in which the COE can survive without all our Friends, and our goal is to achieve a meaningfully enlarged support group over the coming years.


Principal Chairs
Dasha Shenkman (Leader Chair)
Sir Siegmund Warburg’s Voluntary Settlement (Double-Bass Principal Chair)
The Rupert Hughes Will Trust (Principal Oboe and Principal Flute Chairs; The COE Academy Wind players)
The 35th Anniversary Friends (Principal Bassoon Chair)
The Underwood Trust (Principal Trumpet Chair)
The American Friends (Principal Timpani Chair)
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