Link Love Wednesday

The thought of writing an article for the day after the election seemed a bit overwhelming but it dawned on me that I haven’t posted any sort of formal link love style post in quite some time. Consequently, it is high time to rectify that oversight so here’s what has been catching my attention as of late.

At Inside The Arts…

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Out and About…

  • Am I bummed that Thomas Cott decided to formally retire his weekly email newsletter, You’ve Cott Mail? You bet I am. But that doesn’t mean you’re out of luck for finding curated arts news off the beaten path. If you haven’t done so already, sign up for Ceci Dadisman’s ArtsMail, which she describes as “a new weekly email newsletter chock full of news and information for arts administrators. Sign up and you’ll get actionable items that you can put to use right away.” Here are some gems that would have otherwise completely flown under my radar: Eric Underwood: Why dance is for dudes (loved reading this just after experiencing one of Giordano Dance’s productions here in Chicago), Personalization Matters by Michael Barber, and Live screenings ‘won’t kill theatre’ by by David Hutchison.
  • And speaking of Thomas Cott, I’m still all kinds of grateful that he’s maintaining his Twitter feed which pointed me toward Regional Theater Veterans Launch Nonprofit Touring Production Company by Gordon Cox.
  • If you enjoy a bit of spice to your culture writing, make sure you’re reading what Howard Sherman publishes. Although he tends to be published in a variety of outlets, you can maintain a good aggregated list via his Twitter feed. Howard is an activist’s activist when it comes to the arts; one of his recent efforts took him to Harford County, Maryland to speak out against $100 per student, per show fee for high school drama students. Given that Harford County was my home for several years prior to moving to Chicago, I was all kinds of happy to see people like Howard taking an active interest in what happens there.
  • And for those who think Norm Lebrecht is the king of mean, you’re completely missing the soft underbelly he exposes on a regular basis. Case in point, this blurb about tolerance and all that is good about classical music via a concert event for Syrian and Somali refugees as part of the St. Louis Symphony’s Music Without Boundaries program.

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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