non divisi On Hiatus

Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra (MSO) concertmaster, Frank Almond, was one of the first new voices introduced at via his blog, non divisi. His very first post was from January 7, 2008 and since then, he has been a bold voice when examining difficult issues and providing unique insights from a stakeholder role that often treads a razor thin line.

Yesterday, Frank announced that he was putting the blog on indefinite hiatus and although we’re all sad to see him step back, we’re equally fortunate to have him be a part of our larger culture blogging community.

I love writing for nondivisi and have cherished the opportunity to do so, however sporadic the content and quality have been. But with a heavy heart I must inform you that nondivisi is now on indefinite hiatus, due to a serious illness within my immediate family.

I’ve started and abandoned various articles for this blog over the last few months as my life situation became more chaotic and confusing. Perhaps some of you have been faced with the possible loss of a spouse or child due to some situation you never expected to confront. And you would know the indescribable pain and emotional distress that can quickly drain you, even under the best of circumstances.

At the moment I have no choice but to prioritize as best I can, minimizing both my musical and extramusical pursuits to the extent possible.

Many thanks to all of you that have offered poignant messages of support and hope, and I look forward to reviving nondivisi as soon as possible.

Thank you all, and I hope to be back here writing very soon.

Adaptistration People 102Some of my favorite posts from Frank over the years include:

From everyone at Inside The Arts, our hearts go out to Frank and his family during this time.

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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