What A Genuinely Terrific Good News Story

What musician doesn’t dream of rising to fame by filling in at the very last moment for a featured soloist to rave reviews? After all, it worked for Toscanini and that lighting has to strike again at some point in time, right? It just so happens that it struck again in New Orleans via the Louisiana Philharmonic’s principal clarinet, Christopher Pell.

A strong 2010The 7/25/2013 edition of nola.com published an article by Chris Waddington with all the details but in a nutshell, Pell filled in as soloist for Copland’s Clarinet Concerto with only a few minutes’ notice and not only rose to the occasion, but by all accounts knocked it out of the park.

As a result, the orchestra’s music director, Carlos Miguel Prieto, decided to personally sponsor a wildcat matching gift campaign through March 31, 2013 (details and donate).

In a season with so much dark news, it’s genuinely wonderful when the occasional ray of sunshine breaks through!

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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