Missing The Obvious

Have you been following the hoopla surrounding the auction of the “Titanic Violin” that was allegedly found with the body of the ill fated ship’s band master, Wallace Hartley? It’s been an interesting media circus and ever since it was announced that the instrument would go up for auction at the end of this month, a steady stream of cynicism has been casting shadows over the whole affair.

ITA-GUY-046Consequently, it’s heartening to see the latest article at Neo Classical from violinist Holly Mulcahy, who wrote about all of this on 4/1/2013. She raises a number of good questions that really get you thinking but brings everything home at the very end by pointing out what everyone has been missing.

If nothing else, it should make those of us who get caught up in the minutia within the steady stream of gloom and doom to stand up and take notice of what’s really important.

No spoilers here, you’ll have to go read Mulcahy’s article to see what’s what.

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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