What is the best way to start a new club?

7 points to consider as you set up a new group for music lovers

There are three stages to setting up any new adventure, especially one involving a group of people.

  1. The idea
  2. Turning the idea into reality
  3. Implementing the program

Right now, a team I am involved with is hurtling towards stage 3 and it has been a wonderful journey.

Not everything has been smooth sailing, but most fascinating is realizing the similarities between forming the Dunedin Music Society as a public charity, and just about every other musical ensemble or non-musical program I have witnessed being created.

Here are seven points you might find useful when you find yourself bringing a group of people together for the first time:

Looking sharp…

Does a Conductor's uniform really matter?

You paid $60 for a decent seat.

There are a hundred funeral-clad souls seated on a brightly lit stage, each performing their own little solo recital.

The house lights dim, and the orchestra falls quiet.


A waiter from the Ritz Carlton bounces out of the wings with unsavory frizzy hair flopping so much it draws your gaze.

For some reason, the audience go wild and applaud the appearance of a magnificent maître d’.

Give him a top hat, and he could be a groom.

Or Batman’s nemesis, the Penguin.

So why do most Conductors still wear tails to perform in, and does it really make any difference?

7 odd reasons why people avoid the Opera

And they are nothing to do with the music!

Mention the word “Opera” and the vast majority of the population in both the USA and the UK run and hide.

People actually look for ways to avoid talking about it, like it’s a sleazy secondhand car salesman or embarrassing bodily discharge.


According to a few surveys and studies* it seems as though the reasons people avoid the Opera (and Classical Music in general) have nothing to do with Opera itself, but what we imagine it is like.

That seems a bit odd to me.

Why do we choose to like or dislike something based on what we don’t know?

Here are seven possible reasons:

Feed yourself, and others

Live music does so much more than entertain.

2016 has been a year of ups and downs, changes, reflections and growth.

For some it’s been a painful year.

The holidays are a time when we reflect on the past, yet look forward to new beginnings.

However stable or tumultuous your life has been recently, make it a plan to attend more concerts in the near future.

Here’s why…

Those speakers are for what, now?

Why are many performers using sound systems during their concerts?

I once attended a concert and felt a tingle in my arms.

Not because of a heart-attack, nor because I was cold.

There was a moment of simple beauty.

A “Goosebump Moment” as George Marriner Maull of the Discovery Orchestra calls it.

What causes such music-inspired goosebumps?


Which Musical Character are YOU?

Combine psychology and industry research to find dormant natural abilities and a possible new focus!

We all have strengths and weaknesses – things we are good at and things we are not so good at.

  • Businesses do SWOT analyses.
  • Individuals take personality tests.
  • Some organizations encourage their members to take a Spiritual Gifts test.

If you are a musician or a supporter of live music, what are your industry-related strengths and weaknesses?

Wouldn’t it be a dream if we could combine some of the latest practical psychological research with the most realistic music research conducted in recent years?

I like making dreams come true, so I did. And now YOU get to benefit!

Piano outside

Bruch: Scottish Fantasy

Stephen's Classical Rate N Slate

Hear what British American Conductor Composer Stephen P Brown has to say about classical music, and why you should find a local performance to attend. You might agree with his rating and slating! Listen to Stephen’s Hall of Fame concert every morning and evening on Classic Pinellas Radio.

Download mp3 or buy CD:

Why does Classical Music shut down over the Summer?

Not all audiences can access out of town Festivals and Summer Camps

I have never understood the Classical Music industry’s obsession with the Academic school year.

Okay, schools take the Summer off so that kids can go out to the fields and help bring in the harvest. Wait… does anyone still do that? [Shakes head rapidly] That discussion will have to wait.

Last week there were forty-four concerts in my town. Four of them could be deemed “Classical.” This week, there are thirty-five concerts in my town, and one of them is Classical. Yes, I wrote “1.” In fact, it’s not even in my town – it’s half an hour away, but my local rag (newspaper) listed it anyway.

bar concert

The most unexpected networking question. And answer.

Networking Events = Ugh. Unless you choose to make them interesting.

Networking involves a multifaceted approach and numerous mediums (media?).

A networking event is just one of them, and gets a really bad rap because of the really bad practices people tend to employ at them.

After years of avoiding every networking event that came my way I figured things might have changed by now.



Classic Pinellas Radio Founder, Conductor Composer Stephen P Brown, is committed to bringing good percussion music to life.

Classic Pinellas RadioLaunched earlier in 2016, Classic Pinellas Radio has already had an impact in the local Tampa Bay arts scene, and regularly plays globally to listeners as far as Australia and Germany. The goal of the station is to expose “normal people” to snippets of listenable classical music much like the highly successful Classic FM radio station in the UK has done for almost 25 years.