Hugh Resnick, the Assistant Director for Research and Analysis at the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, wrote in to remedy my ignorance regarding programs in the U.S. that is similar to the Australian course I wrote about on March 19th. Hugh had this to say about a program he participated in while obtaining his MBA:
“In fact, that is exactly how I got my job here at the ISO. I was an MBA student at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business involved with the program’s Sports and Entertainment Academy. I met the ISO’s VP of marketing there who suggested that a number of us do a project with them. It happened to be an economic impact study. We added value mostly because our group had no connection to the Symphony, and had really no reason to puff up the numbers. We were given all the access we needed, and I was recruited from that group into my present position. We have continued to do projects with the Kelley MBA program and I think it is a win-win situation.
Both in the sports and entertainment industries, there is a feeling that ‘industry experience’ is paramount, when in most cases, industry experience just amounts to being immersed in everyone else’s bad ideas.”
Thanks for the note Hugh, I did contact Tom Bowers at the Indiana University, who coordinates similar programs between the school and the ISO, to set up a time to interview him and find out more about the type of programs they currently engage in. Hopefully we’ll be able to read about some details from student’s findings and discover if they have had any positive impact on how an orchestra manages itself.
I did discover on a follow up email with Hugh that one difference between the study his group form IU performed and the group from Sydney, is performing is that the latter is being provided with opportunities to work and interact with the musicians. Hugh did express that interaction with the Indianapolis musicians is something future students will hopefully be able to take advantage of.