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.