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The Digest of Arts, Culture and Ideas
Updated: 9 min 47 sec ago

The Louvre Gets Its 18th-Century Groove Back

April 17, 2014 - 3:54am

“The Louvre Museum is preparing to reopen its 18th-century galleries on 6 June, after nearly a decade of renovation work.”

What’s Wrong With The Metropolitan Opera? No, It’s WHO’S Wrong

April 17, 2014 - 3:51am

In part three of a series on what’s ailing America’s flagship opera company and how to cure it, Dawn Fatale looks at engaging the public and at casting – and says the Met must stop casting five to six years in advance.

An Artists’ Boycott Of Putin’s Russia Could Backfire

April 17, 2014 - 3:50am

Judith Mackrell: “[If] artists move towards the blanket boycott [Jonathan] Jones has advocated, life can only get harder for all those artists opposed to Putin and his politics. It can only restrict their dialogue with the wider art scene and push them back towards the old cold war-era isolation.”

Americans for the Arts Wants You!

April 17, 2014 - 3:48am

Don’t miss our Annual Convention in Nashville this June 13-15—not only the best professional development opportunity of the year, but also your chance to learn from and network with 1,000+ arts professionals from across the country.  More information at Americans for the Arts.

The Ten Best Documentaries Of All Time, Per The New Yorker’s Film Blogger

April 17, 2014 - 3:48am

Richard Brody: “I’m the first to admit that it’s a somewhat tendentious list, with an odd preponderance of French movies. This isn’t merely the result of a personal affinity for an adoptive cinematic homeland but, rather, the crystallization of an idea.”

Hilary Mantel Says Political Debate Has Been Replaced By Bullying And Abuse

April 17, 2014 - 3:47am

Responding to the pounding she took in the media last year for misunderstood remarks about the former Kate Middleton, Mantel says, “I do think the level of public debate is debased. To know how far it is debased – well, you have to be on the receiving end of a hate campaign like that to know how bad it is.”

Adam Gopnik And Elizabeth Gilbert On The G.A.N. (Great American Novel)

April 17, 2014 - 3:46am

“On this week’s Out Loud podcast, Gopnik and the writer Elizabeth Gilbert … join’s literary editor, Sasha Weiss, to discuss how the concept of the G.A.N. has evolved over the years and how it has influenced the aspirations of American writers.” (audio)

‘Love Is Something You Do’: Jamaica Kincaid And Lawrence Weschler On James Baldwin

April 17, 2014 - 3:45am

The two authors – novelist/essayist Kincaid and longform journalist Weschler – join scholar Rich Blint and radio host Brian Lehrer to talk about Baldwin’s life and his ideas on love and race. (audio)

Ballet’s Most Difficult Moves, Dissected

April 17, 2014 - 3:43am

“What can pass in just a few musical beats during a performance – the corkscrew jumps, the ballerina who seems to fly apart in the air only to land with perfect poise – is dissected here for the speed, timing and calibrated force that audience members might miss if they blinked.” (video)

Studying Ballet In Iraq

April 17, 2014 - 3:42am

“In American and European cultures, ballet is typically viewed as a respectable art form, and you wouldn’t think twice about teenage girls taking lessons.” In Iraq, ballet lessons might get a girl killed. (includes video clip)

New La Scala Scandal: Incoming Boss Buys Productions From His Current Employer

April 17, 2014 - 3:41am

“Alexander Pereira, who is scheduled to take over the Milan opera house on Oct. 1, signed an agreement to buy four productions for La Scala from the Salzburg Festival, where he is the director, without the approval of the Italian authorities.”

A Tour Of British Isles Accents In One Unedited Take

April 17, 2014 - 3:40am

Professional accent and dialect coach Andrew Jack covers a dozen or so accents from England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, and even the Isle of Man – all in 1’25″. (video)

Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, Milwaukee Symphony

April 17, 2014 - 3:04am

Under the direction of the President & Executive Director, the Vice President & Chief Operating Officer will oversee all aspects of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra’s operations; ensure optimum organizational excellence and efficiency; oversee and monitor the Orchestra’s external relationships, including but not limited to all venues in which the Orchestra performs; and play an integral role in the negotiation of the collective bargaining agreement (CBA).

Oversees the development of the master calendar in conjunction with the Director of Artistic Planning and Vice President of Marketing, in accordance with the CBA. The Vice President & Chief Operating Officer maintains overall responsibility for all operations and personnel aspects of the Orchestra. Direct reports include Director of Operations, Orchestra Personnel Manager, Stage & Technical Manager, Director of Education, Principal Librarian and Information Technology Manager (currently consultant).

Job Description


  • Responsible for all logistics of day-to-day operations of Orchestra including supervision of the production of all rehearsals, concerts and other activities.
  • Work with Director of Artistic Planning and Vice President of Marketing in developing season schedule, in accordance with the CBA.
  • Responsible for development and maintenance of Orchestra and operations budgets.
  • Responsible for maintaining the relationship with the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts and all other performance and tour venues.
  • With President and Executive Director negotiate and maintain agreement with the Florentine Opera.
  • Negotiate fees with other contracted tour and run-out venues.
  • With staff, develop potential additional performance sites, including community concerts, summer venues, etc.
  • Supervise planning and execution of tours and run-outs, US or overseas in collaboration with the Director of Artistic Planning.
  • Supervise electronic media activities, including national radio syndication, recordings and television.
  • Work with Director of Operations to liaise with stagehands and IATSE
  • Work directly with staff conductors and appropriate staff members in other planning (pops, education concerts, tours, etc.).
  • Provides long-term strategy and vision for future growth.
  • Perform artist duty as assigned.

Orchestra Personnel

  • Responsible for daily application of the labor agreement; serve as liaison to select orchestra committees (including Players’ Council, Scheduling Committee, etc.) and local Musicians’ Union.
  • Serve on management team in Master Agreement negotiations.
  • Work with Music Director and Assistant Orchestra Personnel Manager to set audition dates.
  • In coordination with Orchestra Personnel Manager, negotiates overscale agreements and other aspects of Individual Musician Employment contracts in consultation with Music Director and President & Executive Director.
  • Work with Music Director and Orchestra Personnel Manager on all orchestra personnel issues.
  • In conjunction with the Chief Financial Officer, promote best practices for management of human resources.
  • Monitor all personnel policies and procedures, ensuring legal compliance.


  • Oversee the development and implementation of all educational programming, in conjunction with the artistic and education staff.
  • Oversee the development and progression of the Arts in Community Education (ACE) program.
  • Provide long-term strategy, vision for future growth, and maintenance of leadership position in the field.


  • Participates in Strategic Planning discussions and Board leadership activities. Serves as a staff representative to Executive Committee and Board of Directors’ meetings. Attends Senior Staff, Staff Managers, All Staff and HR meetings. Coordinates and attends Players’ Counsel meetings.
  • Serve as MSO representative on the Milwaukee Arts Partners (Tessitura) Executive Committee.
  • With the CFO, supervise risk management for the company and related organizations.
  • Take responsibility for Concert Duty as assigned.
  • Performs other duties as apparent or assigned.


Job Qualifications

This position requires the ability to work effectively with musicians, staff, guest artists, presenters, volunteers, and the general public. The ability to act with discretion and handle sensitive, confidential information is a must. An understanding of working with a Master Agreement, knowledge of labor law, and a background in operations are required. The position requires the ability to pay attention to details, handle many projects simultaneously, and demonstrate good judgment and maturity in decision-making. Also required are excellent verbal and written skills, ability to be a team player and a team leader, motivate others, manage and direct the performance of others, and have an interest and understanding of orchestra repertoire.

This position is required to use a computer and associated software (principally Microsoft Office, especially Microsoft Excel), The MSO uses Tessitura for all ticketing and patron/donor tracking and OPAS for Operations/Artistic.

How to Apply

Send your resume as a Word or PDF attachment to

The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra is an equal opportunity employer.

Is America Suffering A Brain Drain?

April 16, 2014 - 5:37pm

“For many years, the United States has benefited from a kind of reverse brain drain, which is that the best and brightest from all other countries would come to the United States to do research because we had for a very long time the most generous support for basic science. But I have seen, especially recently, the trend is starting to reverse a little bit.”

Seattle Theatres Talk About Raising Wages

April 16, 2014 - 4:50pm

“Despite the outcry from some restaurant and bar owners in the past few weeks, not everyone running small and midsize businesses with razor-thin margins is panicking about the prospect of a $15 minimum wage. Arts organizations large and small say they will do what it takes to increase wages.”

Why We Shouldn’t Trust People Who Predict The Future

April 16, 2014 - 4:23pm

“Why? Because there’s money in it; money and faith. I don’t just mean the few millions to be made from book sales; nor do I mean the simple geek belief in gadgetry. And I certainly don’t mean the pallid, undefined, pop-song promises of politicians trying to turn our eyes from the present – Bill Clinton’s “Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow” and Tony Blair’s “Things can only get better”. No, I mean the billions involved in corporate destinies and the yearning for salvation from our human condition.”

A Wide Open Race This Year For Tonys’ Best Musical

April 16, 2014 - 1:19pm

“The 12 shows are such a mixed bag that this year’s race for the top prize, the Tony Award for best musical, is wide open for the first time in recent memory. In question is not just that award, but also (and this is truly rare) the four or five nominations for that category, which will be announced on April 29.”

Study: Some Parts Of Our Brains Deteriorate Significantly After Age 24

April 16, 2014 - 1:11pm

“Using a piecewise regression analysis, we find that age-related slowing of within-game, self-initiated response times begins at 24 years of age,” the authors write. In other words, older players took longer to respond to new visual playing conditions before taking action. And, according to the study, it was “a significant performance deficit,” which likely has consequences even outside abstruse digital space wars.

Study: What Country Music Says About Our Economy

April 16, 2014 - 1:07pm

In an analysis of the most popular country songs over six decades, Jason Eastman and Terry Pettijohn II of Coastal Carolina University finds top hits are “lyrically more positive, musically upbeat, and use more happy-sounding major chords during difficult socioeconomic times.”