The Viola Organista: Too Cool Not To Mention

Although this isn’t the sort of topic we usually examine, it is simply too cool to pass up so if you haven’t already seen it, set some time aside today to watch the videos on Da Vinci’s Viola Organista, an instrument the inventor conceived but never built during his lifetime.

Adaptistration Guy 071It has a genuinely beautiful sound and the story behind how Polish pianist Slawomir Zubrzycki successfully built a working instrument that he subsequently used in concert on October, 18, 2013 as part of the International Royal Cracow Piano Festival. If you a keyboard/engineering/instrument making geek like me, you’ll love this.

You can also find a good article at smh.com.au with all of the requisite details about how the instrument works etc.

The Viola Organista in Concert

Interview With Slawomir Zubrzycki (in Polish)

AFP Video of Concert (nice footage)

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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