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A roundup of news and opinion in the industry. If you’d like to add your voice to the listings we choose each week, please don’t hesitate to send us a note.



With the shifts in support for orchestras around the US, changing demographics, and the creative and sometimes disruptive power of the digital world, it's time to check in with two recent articles:

US Orchestras Are Too Important to Fail
USA Today: Jonathan Kaledin
Taking American orchestra “exceptionalism” into the 21st century now requires a complete rethinking of the role our federal government plays in providing financial support for these institutions.

It’s Official: Many Orchestras Are Now Charities

NY Times: Michael Cooper
There is a stark reality increasingly facing American orchestras: They are now charities, relying more, on average, on philanthropy than on the ticket sales that used to buttress them.

Read additional news on US Orchestras in the NATIONAL section below.


A small selections of responses from the music and arts world regarding the impact of the recent presidential elections:


Why it’s Time to Completely, Totally, Finally Give Up on Economic Impact Studies in the Arts
Michael Rushton, For What It’s Worth/an ArtsJournal Blog
Economic impact studies reduce the arts to the level of every other sector in the economy: one that hires people, sells things, earns people income. There is no argument for public support anywhere in those ordinary facts of life.

Arts Education…Saved My Life
WFMT: Lin-Manuel Miranda
Lin-Manuel Miranda has impacted many lives through his Pulitzer Prize-winning work Hamilton: An American Musical. Recently, Miranda revealed how the arts have impacted him, saying that arts education, “saved my life.”

Decolonizing Our Music

NewMusicBox: Gary Ingle
This essay was presented, in a slightly different form, as the final keynote address at the “Decolonizing Music” conference presented by the Music Council of the Three Americas (Consejo de la música de las Tres Americas – COMTA) at the Conservatorio de Música de Puerto Rico in San Juan.

Is Rock ’n’ Roll Dead, or Just Old?

NY Times: Bill Flanagan
Rock is now where jazz was in the early 1980s. Its form is mostly fixed. From Louis Armstrong in the 1920s to Duke Ellington in the ’30s to Charlie Parker in the ’50s to Miles Davis in the ’60s, jazz evolved at superspeed and never looked over its shoulder.


Women in the Arts Get Paid Less Too
Pacific Standard: Tom Jacobs
But they have one advantage over their counterparts in other fields: no motherhood penalty.

South Dakota Symphony Receives Major Award for Community Engagement

The highly-coveted Bush Prize for Community Innovation amounts to a quarter of the orchestra’s annual budget!

St. Louis Symphony Sees Total Revenue Rise

St. Louis Business Journal
The St. Louis Symphony saw its total operating revenue for fiscal 2016, ended Aug. 31, rise to $28.4 million, officials said Monday. That’s up from $26.6 million in fiscal 2015.

Pittsburgh Symphony Continues it’s Fundraising Amid the Strike

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Elizabeth Bloom
The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s work stoppage is now more than six weeks old, and even as seats at Heinz Hall remain empty, the orchestra’s administration is trying to fill the coffers

Debora L. Spar, Barnard President, to Lead Lincoln Center

New York Times: Michael Cooper
Lincoln Center, which went through a messy shake-up at the top last spring just as its long-delayed project to renovate David Geffen Hall was beginning to take shape, is turning to academia for its next leader.

New York Philharmonic’s Next Leader Gives a Taste of Things to Come

NY Times: Anthony Tommasini
Great anticipation hovered over Thursday evening’s New York Philharmonic concert at David Geffen Hall. It was the first program to be led by the Dutch conductor Jaap van Zweden since the announcement in January that he would succeed Alan Gilbert as music director.

Jeremy Denk and His Piano Take a 600-Year Tour

NY Times: Anthony Tommasini
“Medieval to Modern,” a program he presented at Alice Tully Hall on Wednesday, included 80 minutes of music, with no breaks: 23 works spanning 600 years, from a lament by the 14th-century French composer Guillaume de Machaut to an obsessive 1985 étude by Gyorgy Ligeti.


Making Opera Relevant to Our Times, Beyond Pure Entertainment

The Irish Times: Lara Marlowe
Stéphane Lissner, the director of the French national opera, is going all out to recruit new opera-lovers.

The Woman Who Has Transformed English National Ballet
NY Times: Roslyn Sulcas
Ms. Rojo, 42, a Spanish-born former Royal Ballet principal dancer, has been in her current job for four years, and she has made a startling difference to English National Ballet.

‘Digital dance’ World First for Scottish Ballet
The National: Kirsteen Paterson
The inaugural digital season – said to be the first time a ballet company has curated a month-long program of projects made for the format – aims to explore “a new way to present dance” and features “pioneering” projects.

How Did South Korea Become a Classical Music Powerhouse?

KQED: Elijah Ho
On San Francisco Symphony’s First Trip to Korea, a Family Legacy Comes Full Circle.

International Activity Financially ‘Worth It’ for UK Arts Organizations

Liz Hill, Arts Professional
Over half of Arts Council England’s NPOs are reaping rewards working internationally, but larger organizations and those based in London tend to benefit most financially.


Sofar Sounds’ Intimate Shows Feature Local Musicians in Cities Around the Globe

Hannah Huynh, The Observer (video)
Sofar Sounds hosts intimate, stripped-down concerts, and each performance showcases local musicians in cities around the world. Whether it’s been live in New York or streamed on their website, the site has featured incredible musicians.

Social Media Content Management for Musicians

Music Think Tank
You’ve decided how you want to brand yourself online. You’ve created your band’s social media pages. You’re posting regularly, and still, you’re not seeing results. The solution: content planning.

How to Set an Achievable Crowdfunding Goal

Nathan Zebedeo, Fractured Atlas
When you’re setting up a crowdfunding campaign, one of the first decisions that you’ll make is setting your goal, the amount of money that you want to raise. This decision can have far-reaching consequences and is often where the campaign lives or dies.

Opera Drops Its Scruples, Allows Millennials to Tweet During the Show

The Wall Street Journal: Jennifer Levitz
Theaters create ‘tweet seats’ for the itchy fingered; ‘this orchestration is DOPE’


A Musical Response to The Election: Bach Suites
TED Fellow, Joshua Roman (video)
Principle cellist of the Seattle Symphony offered all six Bach suites for solo cello – and received a million views before the week was out.

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