• Asleep at a concert
    Articles

    Who cares about live music?

    Time for a rant/ rave/ vent, methinks. It’s been a while. Bear with me: Who cares about live music? Everywhere I look there are stories of musicians being yelled off their stage, performers crying for “decent” pay, orchestras and opera houses closing down, music schools diminishing beyond recognition, and a host of other music-related news that simply doesn’t play a pretty tune. So, who actually still cares about music? Musicians do (instrumentalists, singers, composers, conductors). Politicians will if it makes them popular. Some film producers and directors do. Music writers and administrators do. Music teachers and professors do. Some corporate executives hoping to make their company look good by supporting local…

  • Share your story of leadership with Stephen P Brown
    Articles

    Seeking Leadership Stories

    As a Conductor I am often held responsible not just for the instant moment-by-moment success of live music-making, but also the entire image, direction and resourcefulness of the whole organization. Every action and decision a leader makes directly influences outcomes and sales. (Click it to tweet it!) As you know, that basically sums up the outcome of every leader’s work. Leadership studies So over the years I have studied and explored a great many leadership and management concepts and skills, including those espoused by Tom Peters, Michael Hyatt, Marie Forleo, Dave Ramsey, Richard Branson, John C. Maxwell, Michael E. Gerber, J. W. Marriott Jr., Charles Forte, Earl Nightingale, and a…

  • The Towaco Story by Conductor Composer Stephen P Brown
    Articles

    Why the next 20 years of classical music will smash the last 20

    OPINION. That’s all this is. Totally unmerited, unfounded, unresearched, unverified 🙂 I’m in the UK right now, where I spent my childhood and early professional career. My teens and current professional career were/are in the USA. My college life was mostly spent up & down the UK, throughout East & West Europe, and later a sojourn in a couple of countries in the Southern parts of Africa. Next stop? Ah well, wouldn’t you like to know! But as I’m sitting here for a few moments, pondering the extraordinary life I’ve lived split primarily between two continents, cultures and languages (yes, I’m bilingual: I speak English and American), I find it remarkable how much…

  • Articles

    Fire the musicians!

    Yet another terrific #OrchChat last week! Thank you to all who participated in the lively discussion. For one hour several people from around the world gradually joined in as schedules permitted, and there was much intense and passionate discussion among the group. Based on feedback, we kept the format to three topics and as usual, they bled into and over each other. It was actually fun (no, really) keeping up. The topics we explored were: Free Flashmobs. Although a great marketing tool, when orchestras perform for free do they devalue what they do? Liven it up! How do we overcome performer’s lethargism due to the repetitive nature of the job?…

  • Articles

    Nostalgic Chatty Conductors in Beautiful Penguin Suits

    Can you believe it’s already been a month since the last chat about orchestras on Twitter? It was another FABULOUS discussion amongst some passionate orchestra enthusiasts, and we’re on a role with three under our belt. #OrchChat was scheduled for one hour and this time people from around the world were prepped and keen to get started. I’m thrilled so many people participated and the conversations got so meaty we even added an additional topic! One piece of feedback was along the lines of having only one topic per chat. It’s certainly a good idea, but my thought is that these monthly Twitter chats should prompt and promote further discussion all…