I’m off to Northwestern University School of Music today to talk to students on the realities of entering a performance career…
In particular, the seminar entitled “So, you want to be in an orchestra – a workshop discussing the realities of orchestra life” will focus on the inherent issues which shape the reality of winning, maintaining, and surviving a job in a professional orchestra.
Yes, it is good to talk about how musicians might expand their roles in orchestras, better communicate with managers, or be more effective by learning how to simultaneously work in the school system but reality dictates that there are far more important issues at the heart of an orchestra musician’s career which need to be addressed first.
In many cases, preparing students to adequately manage these fundamental challenges is necessary before they’ll ever be in a position to effectively participate in the other topics de jour, such as those mentioned above. Furthermore, while those poplar issues are certain to come and go, the fundamentals never change.
As such, it is good to see institutions such as Northwestern University design a series of seminars, such as the one today to help better prepare their students for the trials ahead. In a perfect world, academia will see the benefit in incorporating seminars and workshops such as these into their required course work. In fact, arts administration programs should include a component to make future managers aware of the issues I’ll be examining today with the Northwestern students. But until then, I’m pleased to be playing a part in this essential task.