So Funny. So Dark.

Given the flood of somber headlines this week, I wanted to intentionally post something light because we could all probably use a smile about now.

Last May, I pointed out the @ArtsAdminsSay twitter account and since then, it…has…exploded in popularity. Racking up more followers each day, it has 3,261 at the time this article was written. On a per tweet basis, it averages more likes, RTs, and replies than those from the New York Philharmonic and LA Philharmonic accounts combined.

Here are some of the more popular offerings:

Be sure to cycle through the replies, some are downright precious. You should also go through the list of followers, it’s like a who’s-who of arts admins.

If you’re looking for even more dark orchestra stakeholder humor, there’s another start-up Twitter account that should be on your radar. This one is from the musician perspective: @OrchestraSay looks to be about a month old and is easing its way into a steady following.

Both accounts offer an enlightening peek at what goes on behind the curtain and inside the minds of those who make everything work. If you’re not following both accounts already, you should rectify that today.

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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