Shop Talk Episode Archive

Shop Talk S01E12: The Commercial Life

Today’s episode tackles the taboo topic of arts admins that leave the field for positions in the commercial sector. I’ve often wondered why this carries around so much baggage and why we don’t see more instances of professionals moving between sectors over the span of their career. We jump into those topics along with all sorts of related contrast/comparisons of board influence, resources, investments, culture, and more. We also answer the question of whether it’s possible to summarize nonprofit/for profit culture differences using pop culture references. Spoiler: yes (Ceci uses Star Trek, Marc uses Lord…

Shop Talk S01E11: Being A Content Creator Before It Was Cool

Being funny is hard. Learning the array of digital platforms needed for content creation is hard. Doing all of that at the same time with tools from 15 years ago in the classical music field is insane, but that’s exactly what Jeff Curnow did. If doing all of that weren’t enough, Curnow is also the associate principal trumpet of the Philadelphia Orchestra and former member of the Empire Brass Quintet. This is a high-octane conversation from start to finish and even though the topic focuses on the finer points of content creation, we also take…

Shop Talk S01E10: Evolving Past Artistic Elitism

This episode was an absolutely perfect combination of topic and guests for an episode to come out during a holiday week. At one hour, the conversation is longer than usual but this is the best time for you to spend the time processing everything these two big brains bring to the table on this topic. While fearlessness and empathy may not be the most common pairing, that’s the best way I can describe how this conversation unfolds. So grab a cup of your favorite beverage along with a snack and settle in for a conversation…

Shop Talk S01E09: Get A Handle On Digital Content Production Quality

The shift from producing live events to becoming a digital content producer is such a daunting task that some orchestras opt for not even trying. Among the biggest challenges is simply getting started and that’s what today’s podcast is all about. I asked two professionals to take part in the discussion and bring perspectives from opposite ends of the experience scale to the conversation. The first was conductor Bruce Kiesling, who in full disclosure mode is a client of mine. After reaching out to ask about the best way to publish a new video series…

Shop Talk S01E08: Centering Equity

In a week where giving thanks is on the mind, I am remarkably grateful these two dynamic and candid guests agreed to join the pod and talk about equity. Ruby Lopez Harper, Americans for the Arts Senior Director of Local Arts Advancement, and Dr. Brea M. Heidelberg, Associate Professor & the Director of the Entertainment & Arts Management program at Drexel University are going to do far more than drop some knowledge on you. If you’re looking for a conversation that’s worth bringing the staff together, this is it. Did I mention it’s candid? Scratch…

Shop Talk, Last Call: Listen To The Situation

At the end of S01E07, guest Scot Silberstein inadvertently set up a fantastic topic for a Last Call installment around the idea of the Stephen R. Covey quote “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” It triggered a fascinating exchange in how that applies to arts orgs and their audiences. Guests

Shop Talk S01E07: Changing Your Narrative

How does an industry with so many decades of carefully crafted narrative go about changing on a dime in response to a prolonged pandemic? This was the basic premise of today’s episode and in order to talk it out, I invited two of the sharpest minds I know that work inside the arts field: author, interviewer, and curator Mark Larson and 6-time Emmy Award winning writer/producer, Scott Silberstein. I dare you to get through this episode an not feel energized. To that end, I don’t think we’ve had an episode with so many wonderful tweetable moments,…

Shop Talk S01E06: The Need For Expertise

This episode’s topic is based on Jason’s blog post, The Most Teachable Era In Human History For The Necessity of Expertise. Questions of expertise are particularly relevant here an now when considering whether  the field has leaders with what we need for these unique challenges. But can that expertise be clearly defined? Do we know what we don’t need? Today’s guests are uniquely suited to this discussion because they have expertise in two remarkably demanding fields. They have both risen to some of the most competitive positions as orchestra musicians and they have made equal…

Shop Talk Last Call: Cross Pollination In A Good Thing

It’s Last Call and today’s installment features S01E05 guests Zak Vassar and Jeff Vom Saal as they respond to the following reader question: “Are there advantages in having professionally-trained musicians in administrative roles?” Guests About Shop Talk The official podcast of Adaptistration.com, Shop Talk invites captivating guests to talk about engaging topics connected to the orchestra business. Shop Talk Archives | Shop Talk; Last Call Archives

Shop Talk S01E04: Fostering BIPOC And Women Composers

Who says COVID shutdowns mean you can’t have a new music workshop? Nonsense! Necessity is the mother of invention and in this installment of Shop Talk we sit down with the trio of big musical brains responsible for putting together The Great Plains Composition Workshop at the Wichita Symphony Orchestra (WSO), which reached out to BIPOC/women/underrepresented people to apply. And boy did they… Attendees worked directly with today’s podcast guests: Emmy-nominated composer, Anne M. Guzzo, WSO Music Director and Conductor Daniel Hege, and WSO Concertmaster Holly Mulcahy. Memorable quotes: This whole thing is fraught with…

Shop Talk S01E03: Deconstructing Silos

In the beginning when Artsgod created nonprofit administration, the org chart was a formless void of jack-of-all-trades that covered the face of the deep. Then Artsgod said, “Let there be light” and there was light. Artsgod saw that the light was good; and he separated marketing from development. Artsgod called the light earned income and the darkness was called unearned income. There was now a revenue stream where never the two shall meet. Artsgod saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good…until it wasn’t. And that’s where today’s topic comes in:…

Shop Talk Last Call: Board Diversity

Grab a cocktail and strap in, we’re going to talk about board diversity with S01E02 guests Weston Sprott and Jason Haaheim. This segment produced a number of memorable quotes: “Power sharing, that’s really what this conversation is all about.” “It’s the modern equivalent of Papal Indulgences.” “Normal led to this, I’m not sure we want to go back.” Guests About Shop Talk The official podcast of Adaptistration.com, Shop Talk invites captivating guests to talk about engaging topics connected to the orchestra business.

Shop Talk S01E02: Art Has Always Been Political

“Yes, duh, art has always been political.” That’s the way one of this episode’s guests described today’s topic, but in the form of one slice of bread used to create the larger sandwich: are opera companies living up to their missions? This episode’s guests include Weston Sprott, Dean of the Preparatory Division at the Juilliard School and a trombonist in the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, and Jason Haaheim, Principal Timpanist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. As you can probably guess, it was a meaty topic sandwich. But what else would you expect from a discussion based…

Shop Talk Last Call: Goals! We Got Goals Around Here!

As promised, today’s post includes the bonus after show content from Shop Talk S01E01: Reaching Diverse Audiences Through The Marcom Lens. This short segment focuses on guests Ann Marie Sorrell and Ceci Dadisman talking about a series of fashion shows designed in conjunction with a multi-year engagement program to improve audience diversity. FYI, this is the segment mentioned earlier in the week that I’m opening up to reader questions. Guests About Shop Talk The official podcast of Adaptistration.com, Shop Talk invites captivating guests to talk about engaging topics connected to the orchestra business.

Shop Talk S01E01: Reaching Diverse Audiences Through The Marcom Lens

Shop Talk is officially up and running and our very first episode for Season 1 focuses on meaningful ways to reach diverse audiences. This episode’s guests include Ann Marie Sorrell, President/CEO at The Mosaic Group, a Full Service Public Relations, Marketing, Events Management, and Government Relations Firm; and Ceci Dadisman, an arts marketer with more than 15 years in the field working with organizations of all sizes and disciplines. We took a deep dive into a program Ann Marie and Ceci worked on that exemplifies successful engagement programs designed to increase African American attendance at…

Shop Talk: Pilot Episode, Poke It With A Stick

Surprise! Today marks the inaugural episode of a new video podcast series where I sit down with movers and shakers in the field and talk shop. Today’s episode focuses on a topic near and dear to my own arts admin heart: substitute musician equal pay for equal work. I’m joined by a pair of leaders from the musician side of the equation, International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians (ICSOM) chairperson Meredith Snow and ICSOM President Paul Austin. Many thanks to both for coming on the program and engaging in an open exchange on a…

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