Len Chapple (left) and his late wife Dallas Chapple have donated $1 million to the Victoria Symphony. File contributed/Victoria Symphony

Shared love of classical music leads to Victoria Symphony’s largest-ever private donation

$1-million donors Len Chapple and late wife, Dallas, were major supporters of the Symphony

The Victoria Symphony has received the largest private donation in their 78-year history.

Len Chapple, on behalf of himself and his late wife of 37 years, Dallas Chapple, donated $1 million to the musical organization as a way to honor her love for music and the community.

“We loved each other, and the Victoria Symphony was the other love in our lives,” Len said. “It’s as important to the city of Victoria as any other non-profit organization. I hope that others will take advantage and come to the Symphony to find their own love of music.”

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Dallas Chapple was a well-known real estate agent in Victoria, and served two terms on the Victoria Symphony board of directors. She also served as chair for the Festival of Trees, the Victoria Executive Management Club and the Rotary Club of Oak Bay.

Her most recent term on the Symphony board ended in September 2017, just a few months before her passing in December.

“Dallas had a passion for music,” Symphony board chair Brian Butler added. “She was a dedicated board member, always happy to lend support or find a way to get things done. The Chapple donation reflects her passion for music and their spirit of philanthropy, and serves as an example for us all.”

The Victoria Symphony will acknowledge the donation over the next few seasons by recognizing the Chapples as season underwriters for the Christmas Pops concert, which was one of Dallas’ favourites.

Symphony CEO Kathryn Laurin called the gift “unprecedented in the arts community,” noting it will create an extraordinary legacy. It also demonstrates the impact classical music and the Symphony can generate within the community and the region, she added.

The funding will be added to the Symphony’s financial foundation, where endowments are invested and interest rates are used to support the Symphony. At this point, the foundation’s sum sits close to $10 million.

“It would be tempting to just take all that funding and do something crazy, but we’d like to use it wisely and do something for our future,” Laurin said. “It’s really building a legacy.”

For more information, you can visit victoriasymphony.ca/chappledonation/

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com


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