Conventions, Compensation, And Blogging

For those with plans to attend the National Performing Arts Convention in Denver next week, make a note to attend The Online Salon Movement, Thursday, June 12, 2008; 4:30-5:45pm, in Room 303 at the Colorado Convention Center where my fellow panelists and I will engage in an inclusive discussion about how the "blogosphere" continues to transform the way arts organizations interact with the media and the public at large." Moderator Monica Reinagel has done an excellent job at getting everyone prepared for the panel discussion and there will be ample opportunity for those in attendance to take part in the session. In addition to serving as a speaker for the panel session, I’m putting together a special edition of the How To Connect With New Media article series as a FREE, downloadable eBook…


I’m looking forward to the session and even more to word having the
opportunity to meet friends, readers, and colleagues. As is the case so
often these days, so much business is conducted via email and on the
phone that we don’t get enough opportunities to interact face-to-face.
On a related note, I’m putting the final touches on the new project I
hinted at last Friday. You can get a sneak-peek here.

Finally, all next week will feature the 2008 Orchestra
Compensation Reports (if you have a serious jones going for the info, you can order a print copy here). All of the articles are loaded into the hopper
ready to go and in addition to the five standard articles; I’m
publishing a special "subscribers only" article for readers registered
to receive the Adaptistration Weekly Email Summary. The bonus article
will contain multi-year trends along with a copious amount of charts
and graphs illustrating that data from the 1999/00 season through the
2005/06 season. If you aren’t already a subscriber, don’t worry, so
long as you register by 12:00 midnight Thursday, June 5 you’ll receive
the email summary containing a link to the special article. Click here to subscribe!  

From the National Performing Arts Convention web page:

The Online Salon Movement

Monica Reinagel, artist and blogger-in-chief, and nutrition guru,
Lindsay Dreyer, dancer, blogger,; Joshua Kosman, classical music critic, San Francisco Chronicle and blogger,; Drew McManus, arts consultant,; Dave Urlakis, digital assets director, Steppenwolf Theatre Company

The "blogosphere" continues to transform the way arts
organizations interact with the media and the public at large. At a
time when more traditional media outlets continue to shrink arts
coverage, a wide variety of passionate bloggers writing about all of
the performing arts have developed an audience of millions of readers
and have challenged the critical paradigm by building a new dialogue
about the arts. A panel of bloggers will offer a wide ranging
commentary on the arts ecosystem and the continuing evolution of the

About Drew McManus

"I hear that every time you show up to work with an orchestra, people get fired." Those were the first words out of an executive's mouth after her board chair introduced us. That executive is now a dear colleague and friend but the day that consulting contract began with her orchestra, she was convinced I was a hatchet-man brought in by the board to clean house.

I understand where the trepidation comes from as a great deal of my consulting and technology provider work for arts organizations involves due diligence, separating fact from fiction, interpreting spin, as well as performance review and oversight. So yes, sometimes that work results in one or two individuals "aggressively embracing career change" but far more often than not, it reinforces and clarifies exactly what works and why.

In short, it doesn't matter if you know where all the bodies are buried if you can't keep your own clients out of the ground, and I'm fortunate enough to say that for more than 15 years, I've done exactly that for groups of all budget size from Qatar to Kathmandu.

For fun, I write a daily blog about the orchestra business, provide a platform for arts insiders to speak their mind, keep track of what people in this business get paid, help write a satirical cartoon about orchestra life, hack the arts, and love a good coffee drink.

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2 thoughts on “Conventions, Compensation, And Blogging”

  1. Hi Drew,

    I wish I was going to be at conference and blogging session.

    I liked your series on connecting with new media. My comment from dance side, is that I think that the approach that dance companies/presenters of dance should take to reaching out to new media is different from how the concert dance community should approach this topic.

    Personally, I’d re-frame issue a bit. I’d simply ask the question how to use social media to reach new audiences and increase publicity. I think that especially in dance community the use of social media tools for building audiences and generating publicity is often an overlapping area so that it doesn’t always make sense to think of them as separate spheres of responsibility and focus.

    Happy to elaborate and look forward to your thoughts.

    Hi Doug, although I would be surprised if anyone in attendance doesn’t ask those exact questions. I agree that overall, new media platforms are an ideal (and cost effective!) way to implement many outreach functions usually separated by the way traditional administrative department responsibilities are categorized.

    It will be interesting to see how the discussion evolves and which areas attendees will show the most curiosity. I’d love to hear more about what you think and I’ll do my best to blog about it on-site (although the convention hotel does not offer complimentary Wi-Fi – such a PITA). ~ Drew McManus

  2. Drew, thanks for follow-up.

    BTW, I meant “concert music” and not “concert dance” at end of 2nd paragraph above – that was probably clear.

    I’ll go through my posts for past couple of years. I’ve written a number of posts about online publicity and marketing for the dance community.

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