According to Clare Bronfman, Dalai Lama ’09 event took in under $160k in ticket sales, so there was nothing left over to donate to Dalai Lama

If we are to believe Clare Bronfman, the Dalai Lama came to Albany to speak to a largely NXIVM audience without getting anything for it whatsoever.

Onstage, on May 6, 2009, Clare Bronfman reportedly told the audience that revenues for the Dalai Lama event was $140,821 and that the cost to put on the event was $283,570 — which meant that the event lost $142,749.

The result was, Clare said, there was nothing to give the Dalai Lama from the event.

Here is the relevant portion of a May 9, 2009 Albany Times Union article, “Dalai Lama organizers pay off debt” by Carol DeMare and Brian Ettkin:

The Dalai Lama, the spiritual and secular leader of Tibet, appeared Wednesday at the Palace Theatre, a smaller venue of about 3,000 seats. Clare and Sara Bronfman, Seagram’s liquor heiresses, worked to re-schedule the spiritual leader’s visit to Albany after the failed Times Union event.

In response to a question submitted by a member of the audience Wednesday, the Dalai Lama said his people investigated the allegations made against the World Ethical Foundations Consortium and its link to NXIVM, a locally based organization that conducts person-growth training courses, and found it to be an ethical group. And, he said, he supports organizations that promote ethics.

At the end of his talk, Clare Bronfman announced to the audience that revenues for the event totaled $140,821 and costs were $283,570, so the consortium was out $142,749.

More than once, Bronfman apologized to the Dalai Lama, saying it wasn’t good news, “in that I don’t have any money to send home,” referring to donations to the Dalai Lama’s causes. “I apologize we have no gifts in that way,” she said.

Palace marketing manager Sean Allen said Friday several of those in attendance asked on their way out about the public financial accounting.

Tenzin Dickyi, a special assistant to the representative of the Dalai Lama in the New York-based Office of Tibet, said a financial accounting of event revenues and costs customarily is announced at the conclusion of the Dalai Lama’s speaking appearances. The Dalai Lama requests this, she said, for transparency.

“Events are not held to make money or profit, and usually the accounts balance,” she said. “Sometimes, the outgoing expenses are greater than the money that comes in.”

Clare Bronfman told the audience she and her sister would make up the deficit. The Dalai Lama downplayed the talk of finances, saying he didn’t want money for public talks.

Allen said 2,391 tickets were sold at the Palace. Ticket prices were $55 and $85. Between 550 and 600 were $55 seats, Allen said. If the figure for $55 seats is put at 575, revenues would have been about $186,000, including the $85 tickets.

The Dalai Lama appears with the Bronfman sisters on May 6, 2009. On stage, Clare Bronfman said the event took in $140,821, but on the IRS filings for her foundation she claimed more than $448,000 in revenues for four years from the event.

On Clare’s  and her sister, Sara Bronfman’s foundation 2009 Ethical Humanitarian Foundation IRS 990 filing, Dalai Lama ticket sales were $156,942 and t-shirt sales were $1,510

Ten days after the Dalai Lama spoke in Albany, The Dalai Lama Trust was founded [May 16, 2009].

According to the Dalai Lama trust’s IRS 990 for 2009 during the fiscal year between March 30, 2009 and March 30, 2010 $2.2 million in donations and royalties were received by The Dalai Lama Trust for 2009.
It is more than possible that the forming of the foundation 10 days after the speech of the Dalai Lama is entirely coincidental.

 

3 thoughts on “According to Clare Bronfman, Dalai Lama ’09 event took in under $160k in ticket sales, so there was nothing left over to donate to Dalai Lama

  1. From the 3/13/2009 Times Union article: For Dalai Lama, third choice is charmed:

    At the WEFC’s heart,” the release says, “is a unique scientific process, developed by Mr. Raniere and imparted by Nxivm, which is designed to facilitate bringing compassionate ethics to the forefront of humanity.”

    A representative of the Dalai Lama went through Nxivm’s training, (Clare) Bronfman said.

    Gee I wonder if that could be a certain saffron robe wearing lama Tenzin Dhonden? Or was that an outright lie too.

    then 03/18/2009 –

    The Bronfmans, who live in the region, said world leaders, royalty, scientists, academics and dignitaries are expected in Albany for the Dalai Lama’s appearances, including billionaire businessman Richard Branson, CEO of the Virgin Group, and 1976 Nobel Peace Prize winner Betty Williams, co-founder of Community of Peace People, which is dedicated to promoting peace in Northern Ireland

    Did Richard Branson attend and did Betty Williams attend? How about all the other world renowned scientists, academics, royalty et. al. And no Emiliano Salinas does not count as a foreign dignitary.

    Now on 03/29/2009 (Liar Liar Pants on fire Clare):

    Tenzin Dhonden said neither he nor anyone else representing the Dalai Lama has actually participated in NXIVM courses.

    So which is it Clare? Did a rep of the DL attend classes or just observe? There is a big difference between observing and participating.. Did you make him sign the NDA?

    The Event originally scheduled to be a week long affair in April 18-22 2009 is tabled and resurfaces as a 1 off event.

    Capital News 9 Albany 5/6/2009

    Rick Ross: “They have a great deal of money. It is my understanding the Dalai Lama will benefit,” said Ross. “So there will be money that will be given to his charities and though those charities may be worthy causes, I think it’s wrong for him to appear in this particular event.”

    The office of the Dalai Lama in New York City did not respond to our request for comment.

    Its called pay to play. He may not have been paid to give his talk but he didnt come to Smalbany for nothing.

    Buffalo “dignitaries” who attended – Steve Pigeon, the strategist-in-chief for Tom Golisano’s (former candidate for Governor of NY) Responsible New York committee took a slew of locals up to Albany two weeks ago to hear the Dalai Lama speak, as guests of Clare and Sara Bronfman, heirs to the Seagrams liquor fortune. Among the guests were Niagara Falls developer Roger Trevino, Pigeon protege Gary Parenti, political financier Hormoz Mansouri, Niagara Falls Reporter editor Mike Hudson, and online political gossip-monger Joe Illuzzi.

    Frank it appears you were snubbed but may have had the last laugh since shortly thereafter in 2012 you acquired the Niagara Falls reporter from the above named Mike Hudson.

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