Re-Imagining the Orchestra

You may be aware that the New World Symphony is America’s leading training orchestra, boasting top rate talent. And you may have heard about their breathtaking new hall in Miami Beach. But did you know that members of this group are daring to re-imagine the business model of orchestras from the bottom up?

The fact that many American orchestras struggle to survive is no secret. In the past few years, top-tier ensembles in Philadelphia, Syracuse, Honolulu, Detroit, Louisville, Dallas, and New Mexico have cancelled concerts, issued pay cuts, declared bankruptcy, or closed their doors. Reversing this trend will likely require more than savvier social media use, fundraising efforts, or other one-dimensional potions.

I recently completed a two-day residency with the NWS focused around this very problem. Below is a summary of our journey.

PROCESS

As a starting point, we used the following scenario. The year is 2020, and almost every major full-time American symphony orchestra has since declared bankruptcy and closed its doors. (Obviously nobody desires this outcome, but imposing these “conditions” forced fellows to think creatively and challenge status quo.)

Confronted by that hypothetical, a group of NWS alum decides to found a new ensemble, Orchestra Future. For this organization, two priorities are non-negotiable:

  1. We must produce outstanding art (an area where Orchestras Past excelled)
  2. We must create a sustainable business model (an area where Orchestras Past were not ultimately able to succeed in the 21st Century)

Beyond these two points, anything and everything was on the table. How might this new, alternate Orchestra Future look?

Magical solutions did not instantly appear. As with any meaningful strategic planning, the process benefited from thoughtful discussion and collective wisdom. Participants began by dissecting Orchestras Past (in other words, the 2011 paradigm), honing in specifically on three large-scale areas they deemed essential: 1) Event Design, 2) Institutional Culture, and 3) Relevance.

After considering both positive and negative aspects of Orchestras Past, attention turned to specific, actionable solutions for Orchestra Future. And even though our meeting time was limited, some fascinating conclusions were drawn.

MISSION

Our thought leaders turned first to mission. They decided that the purpose of Orchestra Future will be to:

  1. Serve and celebrate local community
  2. Function as an arts and innovation “fountain”

These essential priorities would impact every major decision, from programming and musician responsibilities to activities pursued and marketing tactics.

HIRING PRACTICES

With Orchestras Past, outstanding performance was the sole or primary criteria when auditioning new members.

Applicants will only be considered by Orchestra Future when they clearly bring a valuable secondary asset with them. That might mean being an extraordinary educator, great public speaker, good schmoozer, effective fundraiser, dynamic marketing visionary, freakish master of multiple artistic talents, etc. In other words, every employee must clearly demonstrate his/her value towards achieving both non-negotiable priorities (great art and sustainable business model).

CORE PERFORMANCE ACTIVITIES

Orchestras Past engaged in two primary types of performance activities. The ratio of time devoted and perceived importance between these areas was estimated at around 85/15.

  1. Formal concerts-85%. “Masterworks,” “Pops,” or some other program variation. This area was the meat and potatoes for every full-time musician of Orchestras Past.
  2. Engagement-15%. Educational and community outreach events. For members of Orchestras Past, involvement here was often optional.

Both of these activity categories continue to play a role in Orchestra Future. But their relative importance is reallocated to 50/50. And though all musicians will be required to participate on both sides of the equation, not all divide their time equally. Some are more focused on one side or the other, falling somewhere on the spectrum between 85/15 and 15/85.

EVENT DESIGN

In addition to outstanding performance (always important), concerts by Orchestras Past were characterized by several features. A partial list of conventions includes:

  • Programming. Overture-concerto-symphony model. Multi-movement works always played in their entirety. Music by dead, white, European composers comprised 95+% of programs.
  • Instrumentation. Only three kinds of instrumentations were permitted: full orchestra, orchestra with soloist(s), solo encore.
  • Visual stimulation. Typically minimal.
  • Verbal communication with audience. Nothing, or offered solely by the conductor.

While Orchestras Past delivered incredible art through these formats, Orchestra Future will vastly expand the palate of experiences offered. The NWS group imagined a number of initiatives that, at times, challenged each of these conventions.  In particular, they considered ways that event design could directly reflect their mission priorities of local community and arts/innovation fountain.

MUSICIAN RESPONSIBILITY

In Orchestras Past, musicians had the following responsibilities:

  1. Performance. First and foremost, show up on time for rehearsals/performances, be prepared, and follow strictly regulated etiquette guidelines (85-100% of job).
  2. Engagement. At a distant second, participate in educational and engagement events. Not always required (0-15%).
  3. Service. Some musicians had roles on various committees (0-5%).

In Orchestra Future, not only will the proportion of energy dedicated to each of these categories change, but musicians have additional responsibilities including:

  • Secondary skill. Every performer is involved with a secondary area where they have aptitude, interest, and ability to help the organization succeed.
  • Marketing. All stakeholders play an active role in marketing and advocacy.

INSTITUTIONAL CULTURE

Sadly, Orchestras Past had a reputation for being resistant to change. And whether true or not, an infamous study by Harvard researcher Richard Hackman found that orchestral musicians ranked among the lowest in terms of overall job satisfaction compared to other professions, just under federal prison guards.

Though the NWS fellows did not have enough time to outline a comprehensive new cultural positioning statement, they did offer some reflections. Orchestra Future must be a place where creativity, innovation, and experimentation are celebrated at every level. Players should be actively involved with operations, vision, and major decisions of the ensemble. Ideas will be evaluated on the merit of the proposal rather than the rank of its originator. A respectful and supportive environment is key, with a prohibition placed on unconstructive complaining and negative attitudes. If orchestras are truly to serve communities, they must begin with a healthy, vibrant internal culture.

—-

Of course, we’re not yet in the year 2020, and thankfully all of the major American orchestras have not closed their doors. There is a lot these organizations can do now to avoid the heart-breaking scenario that NWS discussed. While specific solutions may vary, one thing is certain: Major innovation is surely a requisite ingredient (true for any sector in our complicated and quickly evolving world). If different results are desired, the model must change.

Thank you to the New World Symphony for being brave enough to tackle this crucial topic. It’s only a starting point—talk won’t save the industry, only action. But this conversation marked an important step, and will hopefully serve as inspiration and a catalyst for meaningful change.

Long live the orchestra!  Here’s to sustainable models that allow this culturally rich institution to produce outstanding art for many, many years to come!

Related articles:

New-World-Symphony---4

NWS video projections during concert

NWS Exterior

NWS concerts are projected to an exterior wall for the public to view

Related Posts with Thumbnails
Share and Enjoy:
  • email
  • Print
  • RSS
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Technorati
  • StumbleUpon
  • Mixx
  • Blogplay
  • Yahoo! Bookmarks
  • Yahoo! Buzz

296 Responses to “Re-Imagining the Orchestra”

  1. 调用 says:

    “哦?那依你看 孕妈妈为何要定期做产检,此笔迹又是出自何人之手呢?”听完了四爷的表态,老爷子此番却并未就此作罢,而是嘴角一挑,露 孕妈妈为何要定期做产检 出了个讥讽的笑意,饶有深意地追问了一句道。老爷子这等追问之言一出,殿中所有人等的目光立马齐刷刷地全都聚焦在了 leep刀治疗宫颈肥大 四爷的身上,此无他,老爷子对四爷的态度显然与对前两位阿哥大有不同,若说个中没旁的蹊跷,却是谁也不信,只是蹊跷何在,众阿哥们却是大多颇为的茫然,皆在等着看四爷究竟会有怎个说头。第三百四十一章接连废黜(三)“回皇阿玛的话,儿臣实无法认出是何人手笔,只知此笔迹绝非出自太子哥哥之手。”四爷到底不是寻常之辈,尽管面对 腺性膀胱炎 着的是个两难的选择,可他还是很快便下了决断,宁可被老爷子

  2. 调用 says:

        姐妹们只消把握这九个性感时刻 对胎儿有害的食物,不 对胎儿有害的食物 费吹灰之力,男人就会心甘情愿成为你的裙下之臣……  当她因为被拥抱和抚摸而感到羞怯时,女人的羞怯是男人兴奋的助燃剂 不孕不育的治疗方案 ,面对男人的主动和热情,女人的忸怩和腼腆实在有着道不尽的风情。  伊莎贝尔?阿佳妮是所有女演员中最会运用羞怯打动观众的人,《孽迷宫》中的她总是一副柔不禁风一吻丢魂的模样,《罗丹的情人》里她也时不时在疯狂中加注羞怯不胜的韵味。她白皙面颊拂过的粉红色晕和肢体传达的半推半就的感觉异常性感迷人。  女 多囊卵巢注意事项 人采取主动的时候就是她在卧室中最性感的时候  女人采取主动  男人从来不想永远捍卫自己在的主动地位,但女人通常情况下并不积极 不孕不育

  3. 宫腔镜 says:

    “戴铎,尔给朕一个解释。”老爷子乃极精明 产检前注意事项 之辈,又怎会看不出此案蹊跷重重,只是他身为帝王,在没有确凿证据前,实是不好轻易表态,毕竟此番朝争可是 宫颈囊肿是怎么形成的 涉及到了近百位朝臣,后头还杵着一众阿哥们,一个处置不当,必定会导致朝堂大乱,而这,正是老爷子竭力避免之事,正因为此,老爷子对挑起事端的库、戴二人自是半点好感全无,此际喝问的声线里自也就不免寒意大起了。“陛下明鉴,此案宗正是由库大人 妇科整形哪家好 转交予微臣的 产检前注意事项,内里附有工部都水清吏司员外郎薛明蓝口供一份,并有长沙知府年希尧转来之案宗副本,微臣所言皆有所据,并无虚假。”此番的弹劾浪潮虽是谋划多时之举,只是格于形势,发动得确是不免稍有些仓促,存在着时间上的瑕疵也

  4. 孕期心理 says:

    宫颈疾病      性生活是男女双方正常的生理需求,和谐的 催眠分娩法的步骤 性生活不但有利于人体的健康,还可以增进男女双方的感情。在性生活中,一般情况下 宫颈疾病,男性往往比较主动,而女性大部分都比较被动,其实对待性生活女性也要积极一点,那么女性在性生活中有哪些技巧可以学习呢?以下我为女性朋友介绍 备孕期间的优生优育怎么做 一些小技巧吧!  1、电话暗示。在男人最想不到的时候,给他打个电话,可以对着电话发出性感的娇嗔,说句:”我好想你”,然后挂断电话,让他回味。  2、穿双丝袜 催眠分娩法的步骤。丝袜对男人的诱惑超出女人想象。试着把内裤穿在丝袜外面,性爱时会让他从吃惊到为之疯狂。  3、抚摸自己。在他面前抚摸自己,却不让他碰你 备孕期间的优生优育怎

  5. brent says:

    great article, excellent read.

  6. I go to see daily some websites and blogs to read content, however this bloog presents ffeature based writing.

    Alsso visit my homepage – ohio state football roster

  7. Good post. I learn something new and challenging on sites I stumbleupon every day. It will always be useful to read articles from other writers and use a little something from other web sites. |

  8. Everything is very open with a clear clarification of the issues. It was really informative. Your site is extremely helpful. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Milagros says:

    Thee actual-time, player-versus-player game
    has players constructing a eck of tygpes after which dropping
    right ihto a foorm of tower protection. Botth
    sides has to use slowly refilling elixir tto spawn minions wwho both defend your
    buildings and assault your enemies.

    my web bog :: clash royale hack (Milagros)

  10. novelty techpoint

  11. I’ve saved your web site in addition to I’m incorporating your bottles to be able to my personal The search engines bank account.

  12. How do i transfer opera settings in one computer to a different?

  13. Sarasota SEO Company

  14. And I USE read wordpress support web page. Just need to know, if my files more than 3GB will certainly be removed if I will not extend my upgrade for another 12 months..

  15. Wow because this is extremely goodexcellent job! Congrats and keep it up
    madden 17 coins http://fonyenetwork.com/blogs/post/1934

  16. Incredibly individual pleasant website. Tremendous information offered on few clicks
    madden 17 coins http://www.loukado.com/blogs/post/17596#sthash.ss4Fo0vT.4jBP81ja.dpbs

  17. nhl 17 coins says:

    You’re a really helpful web site; couldn’t make it without ya!
    nhl 17 coins http://bookyourbarber.com/deborah/2016/08/13/buy-nfl-17-coins-good-spreadbetting-system/

  18. I was giving a speech upon social networking sites and have to mention a high blogging site. If someone could point out one for me, I would really appreciate it!.

  19. Jodi Oyola says:

    Your very own dedication that will get this information in the course of came into existence alternatively potent and have absolutely continually permitted employees much like everyone to arrive in their particular goals.

  20. With havin so much content do you ever run into any issues of plagorism or copyright infringement? My website has a great deal of exclusive content I’ve either developed myself or outsourced but it appears plenty of it truly is popping it up all more than the internet without my authorization. Do you know any methods to help prevent content from being ripped off? I’d genuinely appreciate it.

  21. Of course, what a fantastic site and instructive posts, I surely will bookmark your blog.Have an awsome day!

  22. El compresor esta basado en un motor de frigorífico, el cual es un pequeño conjunto de motor y bomba de pistón, que se encuentran cerrados herméticos dentro de una carcasa de hierro, en un frigorífico hace la función de comprimir el gas, y al pasar este por un estrechamiento del circuito hace una caída de presión provocando el cambio térmico que genera el frío necesario para el frigorífico, (como cuando vaciamos muy rápido un Spray, veremos que se enfría bastante).

  23. this post to him. Fairly certain he’s going to {have a good|have a

  24. I want to blog page about issues I don’t want associating with my ‘work’ self. How do I choose a blog host that has a great anonymity record, in other words, I actually don’t need it to be simple for people to match my IP address or access my personal details.. Also, having arranged the blog up, how do you encourage high quantity visitors?. We have only utilized LJ prior to and I want to try some thing a bit different, but invisiblity is the biggest issue for me personally. Would welcome suggestions of good free blog page hosts..

  25. How do you safeguard your cyberspace content from copyright infringement?

  26. Tory Wulkan says:

    I more or less share your opinion on this topic and look forward to upcoming posts and comments here at savvymusician.com. Thanks!

  27. belajar blog says:

    I would like to be able to write articles and add pics. I do not imply something like bebo or fb or anything like that. I mean an actual blog..

  28. Bonifant says:

    Amazing such a handy online site.

  29. Haser says:

    Hello! This specific write-up couldn’t possibly be prepared much better! Reading this article post reminds everyone associated with my personal preceding place spouse! They constantly maintained speaking concerning this. I am going to onward this site for you to him or her. Rather a number of he’s going to possess a great go through. Appreciate it for giving!

  30. Hyman Luaces says:

    Se requiere amplia experiencia en manejo de caja y en el análisis del perfil del solicitante (no excluyente) aptitud comercial para el cierre del crédito, manejo posnet, caja y moneda extranjera. Nos encontramos en la búsqueda de un Auxiliar de Repuestos para formar parte del plantel de Posventa de un Importante Concesionario Oficial FORD.

  31. In my estimation, savvymusician.com does a great job of dealing with topics like this. Even if often deliberately controversial, the information is more often than not well-written and challenging.

  32. Si necesitas reparar tu Huawei, puedes localizar tu servicio técnico más cercano gracias al buscador disponible en la web del fabricante. Introduciendo tu provincia te aparecerán todos los sitios a los que puedes llevar tu terminal a reparar. En su web encontramos información sobre todos los productos y servicios que comercializan con las categorías de Productos y Soluciones, Información Corporativa, Noticias y Novedades. Siemens cuenta también con un servicio técnico online para sus electrodomésticos por medio de un chat de ayuda, donde un técnico nos dará soporte sobre el problema que tengamos, también podemos descargarnos los manuales de instrucciones del apartado habilitado para ello.

  33. In my view, savvymusician.com does a excellent job of handling topics like this! Even if often deliberately controversial, the material posted is generally well-written and thought-provoking.

  34. Isaiah says:

    You have some really great articles and I feel I would be a good asset. I’d absolutely love to write some material for your blog in exchange for a link back to mine. Please shoot me an email if interested. Regards!

  35. In my view, savvymusician.com does a great job of handling issues of this sort. While frequently deliberately polemic, the posts are generally well-written and thought-provoking.

  36. Love this site– extremely user-friendly and lots to explore!

  37. Dead indited written content, regards for selective information. “He who establishes his argument by noise and command shows that his reason is weak.” by Michel de Montaigne.

  38. Dovel says:

    It’s been simply particularly generous along to supply openly precisely what many individuals would’ve publicized on an e-book to separate up doing some coinage for individual conclusion, primarily given that you might have tried using the idea in case you wished.

  39. Wonderful site. Lots of useful information here. I am sending it to several buddies ans additionally sharing in delicious. And of course, thanks on your effort!

  40. コスプレ衣装販売:http://www.cosqueen.jp/COSQUEENはコスプレ靴:http://www.cosqueen.jp/shopbrand/ct350/の設計、製作、生産、販売の一体化コスプレ衣装販売専門店です。
    コスプレ衣装販売専門店:http://www.cosqueen.jp/の代理販売も行っております。
    顧客のために高品質、低価格のコスプレ靴:http://www.cosqueen.jp/shopbrand/ct350/を提供しており、アニメファンによいサービスを提供しておるのです。
    ぜひ一度ネット販売のコスプレ靴:http://www.cosqueen.jp/shopbrand/ct350/専門店をご利用ください!コスプレ衣装販売:http://www.cosqueen.jp/

  41. I discover myself seeking another internet site to blog page, post, and so forth help?.

  42. Mindi Dulek says:

    I bought a fresh hp pc over a month ago. Can be turning this off each night bad for the pc or should the computer become left on 24-7. I use heard both ways. Any computer techs answers will be appreciated..

  43. Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive learn anything like this before. So good to find anyone with some authentic ideas on this subject. realy thank you for starting this up. this web site is something that’s wanted on the web, someone with just a little originality. useful job for bringing something new to the web!

  44. Great delivery. Solid arguments. Keep up the great work.|

Leave a Reply

Powered by Wordpress | Designed by I Design Blogs