2009 Orchestra Website Review: Reader’s Choice

After years of hearing from readers about which features they find important in an orchestra website but never having a way for them to include them into the reviews, it brings me great pleasure to incorporate the Reader’s Choice Awards in the 2009 reviews. This feature allowed readers to take advantage of the opportunity to rate each orchestra website included in the review with a five-star rating system; so without further adieu, let’s see how each orchestra fared…

These results were based on the cumulative ratings as of 10/5/2009. The star ratings will remain open for the time being and you can find in-depth reviews in the comment section of the Reader Review page. Thank you to everyone who took the time to go through websites and cast a vote

Five Stars

It was a bit surprising to discover that none of the orchestras received an average of five stars but there it is. Readers (i.e. website users and ticket buyers) have high standards!

Four Stars

US Orchestras

Baltimore Symphony, Chicago Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Nashville Symphony, New York Philharmonic, Saint Louis Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Toledo Symphony, Utah Symphony

Canadian Orchestras
Edmonton Symphony, Symphony Nova Scotia, Toronto Symphony

Three Stars

US Orchestras

Alabama Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Austin Symphony, Charleston Symphony, Charlotte Symphony, Chattanooga Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Colorado Springs Philharmonic, Columbus Symphony, Dayton Philharmonic, Elgin Symphony, Fort Worth Symphony, Fresno Philharmonic, Grand Rapids Symphony, Hartford Symphony, Honolulu Symphony, Houston Symphony, Huntsville Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Knoxville Symphony, Las Vegas Philharmonic, Louisville Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony, North Carolina Symphony, Orchestra Iowa, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Oregon Symphony, Pacific Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Phoenix Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, San Antonio Symphony, San Diego Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Santa Rosa Symphony, Sarasota Symphony, Symphony Silicon Valley, Virginia Symphony, Wichita Symphony

Canadian Orchestras
Calgary Philharmonic, Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Orchestra London Canada, Vancouver Symphony, Victoria Symphony, Windsor Symphony, Winnipeg Symphony

Two Stars

US Orchestras

Boston Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, California Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, Colorado Symphony, Delaware Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Florida Orchestra, Fort Wayne Philharmonic, Harrisburg Symphony, Jacksonville Symphony, Kalamazoo Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, Long Beach Symphony , Long Island Philharmonic, Memphis Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony, Mississippi Symphony, Naples Philharmonic, National Symphony, New Mexico Symphony, Omaha Symphony, Richmond Symphony, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, Spokane Symphony, Syracuse Symphony, Tucson Symphony, West Virginia Symphony, Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra

Canadian Orchestras
Orchestre Metropolitain, Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal, Thunder Bay Symphony

One Star

US Orchestras

Rhode Island Philharmonic (one really is the loneliest number of all).

No stars for you!

Hooray, no one managed to earn zero stars!

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 “2009 Orchestra Website Review: Reader’s Choice”

  1. This is a great topic to blog about, because every day, more and more people use the internet to obtain information. To stand out in our technology-driven society, I think it’s extremely important for all organizations to have an attractive, up-to-date, informational website- especially professional orchestras.

    The results of this survey were particularly interesting because a lot of great orchestras fall in the two-star category. Perhaps this survey will inspire a change in some of these websites. Regardless of the outcome, thanks for the interesting post!

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