Even before coronavirus shutdowns, music director compensation was a hot topic, but the current environment introduces a new layer when the issue of shared sacrifice enters the picture.
And while there’s plenty of good material to examine regarding releasing enough details for patrons to decide just how evenly sacrifices are shared, that’s not what this post is about.
Instead, it’s about a music director’s ability to earn their keep, so to speak, by way of flexing their non-artistic fundraising and engagement muscles.
For decades, I’ve stood on a virtual soapbox espousing the need for orchestras to enhance their efforts at clearly defining non-artistic music director duties and responsibilities.
Doing so provides the basic building blocks for valuating what a music director contributes along with providing a framework for fair and meaningful evaluation efforts.
In return, it helps the music director do a better job at compartmentalizing their workload and refining requisite skills. The better they are at that compartmentalization, the more effective they will be when the organization is navigating emergency conditions…like everyone is in right now.