Oversight

The recent problems within the American Federation of Musicians regarding the accusations against Enex Steele of embezzling funds from the Sound Recording Special Payments Fund has caused me to stop and think. At first, I was upset that an organization dedicated to protecting musicians interests against abusive management practices was employing a manager who was allegedly abusing said musicnians. However, after reading the statements released from the AFM ( http://www.afm.org/public/press/press_10-14-03.php and http://www.afm.org/public/press/spf1014.pdf ) it appears that their oversight procedure was doing exactly what it was designed to do. This is good and bad.

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I Go To The Symphony For Their Executive Director?

I have to take a moment and rant about something. When did it become popular to have a biography or message from the orchestra executive director? Not just a listing in a staff directory, but a dedicated biography.  I went to the following orchestra web sites: Richmond Symphony, Rockford Symphony, Green Bay Symphony, and Chattanooga Symphony. They all have biographies about their executive directors but absolutely no information about any of the orchestra musicians (with the exception of the Rockford Symphony, which provides a biography of the concertmaster).

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Lack of Interest: Reader Response

I received the following observation from one of our readers regarding the recent “Lack of Interest” blog. I think it is worthwhile to share because the individual currently holds an administrative position in a major Midwest orchestra. Concerning the issues of finding orchestra management candidates with experience outside of typical industry practice and education, they have this to say: “This is the first orchestra I’ve worked for, and I’m amazed at …

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What We Need Is Another Henry Ford

In 1914 Henry Ford instituted his new process of mass production. His financial backers were insisting that he follow the industry trends and hand build cars designed for the elite in society. They wanted him to hire managers with “conventional” experience in this growing industry. Henry told them to take a hike and put his money, reputation, and livelihood on the line to do it his way. He was on a …

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