One of the hats I wear is head of the board of our local chamber music
center. We are in the process of moving from a founder based organization
to one where the Board will need to function more proactively...in short,
no longer a rubber stamp for the founder's wishes.
Our organization...The Austin Chamber Music Center www.austinchambermusic.org
will be seeking a new Artistic Director. It seems incumbent on us (the
Board) to provide a set of expectations for our new Director and provide
a set of guidelines for the evaluation of that Director.
A major topic of discussion has been the programming of our concerts.
While we (the Board) do not see it as our role to be micromanagers or
programmers, it seems that we need to provide some sort of guidelines
for programming. We are an educational organization with an academy,
school outreach programs, programs which we offer to nursing homes,
retirement communities, as well as a small concert season of concerts
in homes and larger venues, plus a summer workshop and festival. One
of our major concerns is paying the bills while seriously addressing
our educational responsibilities, not only in our teaching, but in our
So, with this limited amount of information, what sort of statements
would you feel appropriate to serve as guidelines for programming for
such an organization? We consider that we have a responsibility to our
established audience, but are also open to attracting a wider audience...not
necessarily by dumbing down the programming, but by offering a wide range
of content...as to what that might mean, I will leave it to your
My imagination includes everything from an evening of Machaut to the
avant gard and how that might support the pedagogical mission of the
Your thoughts, and questions are most welcome.