Tag Archives: heightened artistry

Is Minnesota Orchestra management lying to us?

I’ve ended each day this week by sharing any and all Orchestral Apocalypse ‘012 news with my mother. She wants to be kept up to speed with the situation; she feels just as emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually invested in the Twin Cities orchestral scene as I do.

Last night I was explaining to her about the artistic goals in the Minnesota Orchestra’s Strategic Business Plan Summary. I told her there was a section devoted to “key targets for artistic programming.”

“What are those targets?” she asked.

I opened the document and read them off. “Symphony orchestra of the highest caliber.”

“That doesn’t seem very realistic if management has their way,” she said. “Won’t a lot of musicians leave?”

“Outstanding classical concerts in Orchestra Hall,” I read.

She considered. “They might be outstanding, but they probably won’t be as outstanding as they have been.”

“National & international touring to significant venues…”

“Why would they want to tour if they have so many subs? Wouldn’t that be embarrassing?”

“Live at Orchestra Hall series to feature popular & jazz artists.”

We both shrugged; we don’t care for most popular and jazz artists enough to warrant a two-hour drive to Minneapolis. We can see those here in Eau Claire.

“Exceptional artistic leaders & guest artists…”

“Will they want to work with a demoralized disorganized orchestra?”

“Vital summer & holiday festivals.”

“Meh. Depends what’s on the program, I guess…”

“New concert formats & content.”

“What does that mean?”

“Forward-looking digital and traditional media initiatives to reach broad audiences & raise visibility.”

“Sounds good, but if the quality of the orchestra goes down the crapper, do they really want to be broadcasting that?”

I was going to flip the page forward to read more but I accidentally clicked backward, to this page, and there I found a sentence that I hadn’t read before. And it made me stop dead in my tracks.

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