Alex Ross Could Not Be More Right

There’s a wonderful article by Alex Ross in the May 16, 2022 edition of The New Yorker where the author declares the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra (SDSO) is one of “America’s Boldest Orchestras.” Granted, he roped me in right out of the gate by framing the piece with a comparison of SDSO’s budget and the salary of Chicago Symphony’s music director. The South Dakota Symphony Orchestra, the musical pride of Sioux …

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Creating A Good User Experience Doesn’t Have To Include A Fight

When it comes to the concert experience, it’s impossible for anyone inside the business to go through the process with new patron empathy. Everything from buying tickets online to the in-person event are designed by people with varying degrees of experience with the process. Granted, I’ve been focusing on these questions as they apply to the online process and much of that time is spent helping clients get past their own …

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It’s Time To Change up The Conversation On Concert Attire

Over the weekend, I ran across a Facebook discussion about what patrons wear to the orchestra. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it followed all of the well-worn paths about what everyone thought was acceptable or not and it stuck me just how much those talking points are out of touch. Artistic excellence is inconsequential if you aren’t selling tickets so to that end, the field desperately needs to throw all these old conversations out …

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This Is How You Draw A Line In The Sand

Back in March, I published some early thoughts on what at the time was the growing number of arts and culture organizations cutting ties with artists who are supporters of Russian President, Vladimir Putin. At that time, arts organizations weren’t terribly clear about why they found actions by artists like conductor Valery Gergiev unacceptable. I hinted at posting some additional thoughts about my concerns related to virtue signaling and artists being unfairly …

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A Classy Response To An Ugly Stereotype

The 4/22/2022 edition of cbc.ca published an article by Aidan Cox that examines the New Brunswick Youth Orchestra’s (NBYO) elegant response to the latest outbreak of corporate foot-in-mouth disease. It started with an ad for the 2022 Infiniti QX60 that touts the vehicle’s sound proofing, but does so by pulling out an ugly stereotype. As it turns out, this didn’t sit well with NBYO’s orchestra president, Ken MacLeod “Even though [the …

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