On August 1, the League announced that it will soon be launching Symphony.org, an engaging mix of news, articles, and thought leadership. This updated, mobile-friendly version of Symphony will replace The Hub and the physical version of the quarterly magazine (we’ll still print one special Conference issue). The site will provide an accessible way for members to stay informed about the field and their colleagues. Business partners will benefit from a wider range of advertising options and a greater reach.
As the League staff focuses on developing this new platform, The Hub will transition away from daily posts. News about the orchestra field will appear in a slimmed-down way, spotlighting essential headlines and information. Starting on Thursday, August 11 and continuing until Symphony.org launches, expect new posts on The Hub every Thursday at hub.americanorchestras.org.
Redefining the Canon, a national effort from the nonprofit Boulanger Initiative, aims to diversify orchestral audition excerpts by offering technically comparable excerpts written by historically underrepresented composers. By adding works by previously neglected composers to audition repertoire lists, Redefining the Canon will serve as a catalyst for orchestras to program more inclusive and diverse works, and in turn attract more diverse candidates for auditions. Orchestras, summer music festivals, and youth orchestras are invited to join Phase One, which begins this Fall. Each partner orchestra will select volunteer musicians to examine scores and parts written by underrepresented composers, sourced by the Boulanger Initiative from libraries, archives, and special collections. They will identify excerpts that are comparable in technique and skill set to those found in a standard canon audition excerpt. For unpublished manuscripts, the Boulanger Institute will work to publish the scores, enabling a sustainable shift toward diversified programming.
Learn more at about Redefining the Canon here and register here.
On Friday, the League of American Orchestras’ website was affected by technical difficulties, and we were unable to post The Hub. The League was also unable to send and receive external emails. We’ve resolved the issues and everything’s working again. Thanks for your patience.
On Tuesday, July 19, the League of American Orchestras will present “Handling Burnout and Improving Mental Health in Your Organization,” a 60-minute webinar that addresses pandemic-related mental health issues—and offers ways to work better, work smarter, and prevent overload. Pratichi Shah, president and CEO of Flourish Talent Management Solutions and a member of the League’s Board of Directors, will share resources and techniques for helping everyone at orchestras navigate the challenges and opportunities facing workplaces today.
“Handling Burnout and Improving Mental Health in Your Organization” takes place on Tuesday, July 19 at 3:00 pm Eastern/12:00 pm Pacific. A recording and transcript will be available after the live event. The League of American Orchestras offers 50% off webinar registrations to staff of smaller-budget New York orchestras, made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. In addition, the League offers a 50% discount to staff of NYC arts organizations, thanks to the Howard Gilman Foundation and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Learn more and register here. Questions? Contact League Member Services at email@example.com.
The latest issue of Symphony has just been posted. What’s inside the new edition of the League of American Orchestras’ award-winning magazine? We report on how U.S. orchestras are commissioning works that relate to the here and now, from a far more diverse range of composers than before. We track the actions that orchestras are taking to assist refugee musicians who were forced to flee their homelands; the myriad ways that composers are grappling with the environmental crisis; the increasing presence of Black conductors on orchestra podiums, and we examine the latest developments on the tech front: to stream or not to stream? All this and more in the Summer issue of Symphony magazine, available for free here.
The League of American Orchestras has released a series of Catalyst Snapshots, in which League member orchestras share stories of the tangible progress they’ve made towards their equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) goals. The Snapshots, which are available for free at https://americanorchestras.org/catalyst-snapshots-edi-case-studies-from-american-orchestras/, report on the EDI actions taken and lessons learned by seven orchestras that are making concrete progress in their EDI work. These Snapshots are part of a range of activities and resources from The Catalyst Fund Incubator, a League program that empowers member orchestras to create a culture of inclusivity—and ultimately to nurture and sustain the diversity they seek. Orchestras supported by The Catalyst Fund are laboratories for showing what works in building understanding and creating effective EDI practices. The Catalyst Snapshots cover a variety of EDI strategies and tactics and include the Chicago Symphony Youth Orchestras, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Handel and Haydn Society, Los Angeles Philharmonic, New Haven Symphony Orchestra, and San Francisco Symphony.
The Catalyst Fund Incubator, Catalyst Guides, and Catalyst Snapshots are made possible by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation with additional support from the Paul M. Angell Family Foundation.
Download individual Snapshots or an anthology that includes all seven Snapshots for free at https://americanorchestras.org/catalyst-snapshots-edi-case-studies-from-american-orchestras.
The League of American Orchestras has posted the first round of resources, videos, and more from its 2022 National Conference, which ran June 1-3 in Los Angeles. Posts include transcripts, presentation files, personal reflections from delegates, and recordings—among them a video of conductor Thomas Wilkins delivering an inspirational address at the Conference’s Closing Session, in which he shared his unique perspectives on the importance of connecting with audiences, engaging children in orchestral music, and committing to local communities. Other videos capture sessions focusing on diversifying audiences with research and relevance; tech trends to know about and use; what a post-COVID future might look like for product development and programming; and how to adapt to a shifting philanthropic landscape. In a series of Conference Reflections, delegates who fill varying roles in the orchestra field provide their impressions of seeing colleagues in person again, stimulating sessions, key takeaways, and new ideas. These Conference materials are all available free of charge, no log-in or registration required. More resources and videos of the League’s 2022 Conference will be posted, so stay tuned.
Click here to take advantage of all that the League’s 2022 Conference offered.
The 2022 Orchestra Repertoire Report, produced by the Institute for Composer Diversity in partnership with the League of American Orchestras, with support from the Sphinx Organization’s Venture Fund, shows substantial gains in performances of works by women and composers of color at orchestras nationwide. The 2022 Orchestra Repertoire Report examines the programming of works by composers of color, women composers, and living composers by U.S. orchestras this season as well as longitudinal programming trends from 2015 through the current season. The data was gathered directly from season announcements and the websites of medium- and larger-budget orchestras (League budget groups 1-5).
Key findings include:
• Works by women composers and composers of color (living and deceased) rose by 400%, increasing from 4.5% in 2015 to 22.5% in 2022.
• Works by living composers almost doubled, increasing from 11.7% to 21.8%.
• Works by women composers of color increased by 1425%, from 0.4% in 2015 to 6.1% in 2022.
• Works by living women composers of color increased by 1050%, from 0.4% in 2015 to 4.6% in 2022.
• Changes in diverse programming occurred across all measured orchestra budget groups and geographic regions.
Read the full report here.
Thursday, June 2, is Forward Together: League Giving Day—the perfect time to support the League of American Orchestras in its vital work of assisting orchestras nationwide. Every gift, small or large, makes a difference in supporting the League and its essential work. You can donate online now—or, if you are at the League’s 2022 Conference in Los Angeles this week, just swing by the Donor Desk on Level 2, Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites, to say hello and make your donation in person! Donations received by 11:59 p.m. on June 2 are eligible for some great raffle prizes, including registration for the League’s 2023 National Conference and a $1,000 Visa gift card. Show your support for the League now by participating in League Giving Day.
Los Angeles, California, USA downtown cityscape at sunset
After online convenings in 2020 and 2021, the League of American Orchestras National Conference will take place in person in Los Angeles, June 1-3, 2022. Hosted by the Los Angeles Philharmonic in partnership with the Association of California Symphony Orchestras, the Conference will gather nearly 1,000 orchestra administrators, musicians, board members, and volunteers to explore the theme “Forward Together” at Los Angeles’ Westin Bonaventure Hotel and Suites. Sessions for delegates will tackle the key issues of our time for orchestras, including equity, diversity, and inclusion; audience development; digital engagement; climate change; and financial planning. Other highlights include: a conversation between Los Angeles Philharmonic Music and Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel and legendary film composer John Williams on the intersection of orchestral music and storytelling; live performances by the Los Angeles Philharmonic, YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles), and Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles (ICYOLA); a keynote address by conductor Thomas Wilkins about the importance of communicating and connecting with audiences, bringing music to children, and committing to local communities; presentation of Gold Baton awards to former League President and CEO Jesse Rosen and Thomas Wilkins; and a pre-Conference tour of the recently opened Beckmen YOLA Center that includes a Q&A with architect Frank Gehry. Learn more and register for the League’s 2022 National Conference at https://leagueconference.org/.