Meaningful Diversity Is Closer Than We Think

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While I am all kinds of happy to see service organizations and foundations allocate increased resources to addressing meaning change on issues related to diversity, it still feels a bit like trying to catch up by going slower. All the planned efforts are excellent; providing mentoring, audition prep, financial support, and highlighting minority musicians to potential employers are necessary programs. At the same time, there are options capable of catapulting the …

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All I Want For Christmas Is Some Gender Equality And Diversity. Is That Too F*@!ing Much To Ask For?

Here in Chicago it’s Midwest Clinic week. If you aren’t already familiar with Midwest, it’s the international mega conference for bands and orchestras of all stipe that routinely draws just under 20k attendees. Among the numerous sessions, a trio of offerings devoted to the topic of gender equity jumped out at me. Unfortunately, I am up to my eyeballs in deadline work and am unable to attend. But thanks to the largesse …

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Using Documentary Filmmaking To Help Reconfirm Classical Music’s Relevance

The 11/3/2018 edition of The Baltimore Sun published an article by Tim Smith about a new documentary titled R.A.W. – From Destitute to Doctorate by Baltimore filmmakers Darren Durlach and David Larson. It’s a great overview article that introduces the documentary about tubist Richard White, who went from being homeless, eating from trash cans, and abandoned on the streets of Baltimore to earning a position as an orchestral tuba player, one of …

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Better Late Than Never?

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The 9/20/2018 edition of the Los Angeles Times published an article by Mark Swed that features an interview with Simon Woods, the LA Philharmonic’s new CEO. It a good get-to-know-you interview that provides Woods a platform to address some of the topics on his mind about where the orchestra is and where he wants it to go. To that end, one of the primary goals on Woods’ mind is increasing diversity …

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Women Pioneers Among On-Stage Musicians

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Recently, I read an essay by Nancy Fako that recounted her experiences as one of the early women to win a position in the Boys Club brass sections of 1960 era large budget orchestras. It’s a great essay (something I hope will be published here soon) but it made me wonder about similar women musicians who earned positions during that era and braved the gauntlet of sexism and discrimination. I posted …

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