Photo by Justin Briggs

June 12, 2017
Contact: Mike Gantenbein, Marketing Director, 541-690-3849,

Britt announces reserved seating replacement and expansion in 2018

Jacksonville, OR – The Britt Music and Arts Festival has announced that it will be replacing and expanding its reserved bench seating beginning in fall of 2017, to be completed in time for the 2018 season.

Originally installed in 1987, the current bench seating has been damaged by regular use and weathering. Many boards are loose and dry rot can be seen across all sections of the bench seating area. Repairs are required often and patrons are noticing many problems with the existing benches.

The Britt board and staff have designed a plan for complete replacement of the current benches with new stained wood benches. The plan also expands the number of reserved seats available from 662 to 1000 seats. The total capacity of the Britt pavilion will remain at 2,200. The plan includes improved visibility for the remaining lawn seats by recessing benches into the hillside and installing a new, less intrusive spotlight tower. With demand for reserved seating increasing, reserved seating often sells out with demand for twice as much seating for some concerts. A survey sent to both members and non-members in 2016 supports the concept that more reserved seats are desired by Britt patrons.

In addition to the benches, improvements will also be made to lighting, retaining walls, the lawn and irrigation.

The total estimated cost of the seating replacement and expansion project will be $1,057,000. Britt plans to pay for the upgrades through combined grants, donations and the Seat Sponsorship Program. As of this time, $123,500 have been committed through grants. With five major grants pending, the goal is $488,500 in grant support. The Jacksonville-Applegate Rotary Club, Jacksonville Boosters Club and Britt Society have donated a combined $65,000 toward the project.

The community may contribute through the Seat Sponsorship Program. This program allows individuals, businesses and organizations to sponsor seats with plaques mounted on the upper back of each seat that will be engraved with customizable text. Plaques will remain in place for the next decade. Seat sponsorship levels range from $250 to $1,500, based on location. At this time, 67 plaques have been sold, totaling $61,500 raised toward a goal of $175,000 for the Seat Sponsorship Program. For details and a Seat Sponsorship order form, visit


Inspired by its intimate and scenic hillside venue, Britt Music & Arts Festival provides diverse live performances, an incomparable classical festival and dynamic education programs that create a sense of discovery and community. Since its grassroots beginnings in 1963, the non-profit organization has grown from a two-week chamber music festival to a summer-long series of concerts in a variety of genres, including a three-week orchestra season, and year-round education and engagement programs. For more information, visit