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by Gordon Kalton Williams A number of times over the past few years, the contemporary German film director Werner Herzog has described Los Angeles as the most culturally substantial city in the United States. It’s why he and his wife decided to move here he will say, often citing the number of writers, philosophers, and [...]
Kate Lidbetter, CEO of Symphony Services International, attended the AAPRO Summit in Macau, from 3-6 November 2012. The report that follows notes some important themes that gleaned from the various speakers at the event – it is not an accurate transcription of what was said (unless indicated) and reflects only the notes that she took [...]
Asheville Lyric Opera (ALO) is a small, regional company situated in a small city nestled in the mountains of North Carolina, about 334 miles or 537 ½ kms from the Atlantic coast. It presents a season each year in the intimate 500-seat Diana Wortham Theater and has been getting stronger since its inception in 1999.
Philosophical questions and other practical considerations – My first year at the Orchestre philharmonique de Strasbourg.
Antony Ernst recently moved to Europe to take up a position with the Orchestre philharmonique de Strasbourg after terms as CEO of Sydney Youth Orchestras and Manager of Artistic Planning for the Auckland Philharmonia. He reflects on what he has learnt in his first year in France.
Kate Lidbetter, CEO of Symphony Services International, attended the League of American Orchestras conference, 6-8 June, 2012, held in Dallas, Texas. Colleague Gordon Williams came along to assist with the marketing of the Goodear Acoustic Shield, featured in the Exhibit Hall. The report that follows is not an accurate transcription of any conference sessions or [...]
Elegant Victorian villas and gaslit streets lined with Live Oaks draped with Spanish Moss – downtown Savannah is as beautiful as the travel literature leads you to expect. Savannah, established by philanthropist Sir James Oglethorpe in 1733, was intended to be safe up on its bluff, a functional British bulwark against Spanish Florida and French [...]
Melbourne oboist Anne Gilby recently taught at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music which was established by Ahmad Sarmast in Kabul in 2010. Gordon Williams spoke to her of her experience. In Polly Watkin’s recently-released documentary Dr Sarmast’s Music School [check out the Sydney Film Festival's blurb], we see students practising in sound-proofed rooms, or [...]
I spent Christmas/New Year in Los Angeles. It’s my other favourite city. Lest you think I’m mad, let me say why. I don’t focus on the cars and freeways. I notice coyotes in the hills, snow-capped peaks, citrus, sun and birdsong. I see the boundaries of old ranches on the street maps. Mostly, I see [...]
On 2-3 November 2011, Symphony Services International hosted its second annual Orchestral Summit in Melbourne. Featuring guest speakers Paul Hogle (Executive Vice President, Detroit Symphony Orchestra) and Frankie Airey (Director, Philanthropy Squared), the event was a great success. Read below for various reports on sections of the Summit, and to view the PowerPoint presentations by [...]
You have only to walk a few blocks in many places in the US to get a sense of the scale of philanthropy here. Just pick a city. In Charleston, for example, within a five-minute walk, you can pass the Karpeles Manuscript Museum, Charles P. Darby Children’s Research Center, and Stiles and Virginia Harper Student Services Center...In Savannah, you can stand inside the Richard and Judy Eckburg Atrium, the impressive entranceway to the Jepson Center, one of the Telfair Museums of Art. Philanthropy is pervasive. Sponsorship also is part of life. Is everything sponsored? The ‘please turn off your cellphone’ message before the curtain at San Diego Opera is sponsored by the Sycuan Casino, that is: a business run by a Native American tribe, the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation.
From 1-3 June 2011, CEO Kate Lidbetter attended the Singapore Live! Global Performing Arts Exchange. Symphony Services International took a trade booth at this event to feature our Goodear Acoustic Shield and other products.
From 6-9 June the annual League of American Orchestras conference was held in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Kate Lidbetter and Gordon Williams represented Symphony Services International at both the conference and in the trade hall.
‘Crisis’. That’s the word you most often hear when someone in the US describes the state of opera in America these days. ‘Our donors are going gray’; ‘We’re one donor from disaster!’ And then they recount the companies that have collapsed in the recent past - Orlando, Baltimore, Opera Pacific, Connecticut, Berkshire – and you start to share their feeling of rising panic. Could the same thing happen in our part of the world?
Gordon Kalton Williams writes from San Francisco You’d almost expect musical innovation in the East Bay area of San Francisco. Harry Partch, who conceived music with 43 tones to the octave, was born in Oakland in 1901 and, though a hobo for much of his life, regarded the Oakland/East Bay area as his preferred stomping [...]
Notes from the Association of Asian and Pacific Region Orchestras conference, Hong Kong, October 2010 – Kate Lidbetter Chief Executive Officer Kate Lidbetter attended the Association of Asian and Pacific Region Orchestras (AAPRO) conference in Hong Kong from 14-17 October 2010. She delivered a speech on Audience Development which can be read here, and provides [...]
From 1-3 July 2010, our colleague David Garrett attended a conference hosted by the Institute of Musical Research, University of London, titled The Symphony Orchestra as Cultural Phenomenon. David kindly agreed to provide us with a report on the sessions he attended. The full program of the conference can be accessed at: http://music.sas.ac.uk/imr-events/imr-conferences-colloquia-performance-events/the-symphony-orchestra-as-cultural-phenomenon.html#c1420 David presented [...]