• 27 - 30 SEPT 2021

Challenges of identity and legitimacy for performance institutions

Session 5 | Thursday, 30.5.2013 | 15.00-15.45 | Lecture Hall

How can the orchestra, an organisation that is rooted in the past, find an authentic voice in the modern world? What should an orchestra embody and represent? These questions apply to all orchestras, but specifically to ensembles that are consciously developing their own distinctive voice. This session will explore alternative narratives and look at new ways to define the orchestra as a cultural institution. The speakers will argue that, instead of just trying to be trendy or simply using education and outreach projects to tick boxes, orchestras must find new narratives that represent their true voice. What does it mean to be an orchestral musician today? Could similar narratives apply to small ensembles and soloists? How about their managers, agents and the concert halls in which they perform?

Chaired by

Uffe Savery (DENMARK)

CEO Copenhagen Phil

Uffe Savery is chief executive of the Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra. He began his career as a founding member of the Safri Duo, a successful classical percussion group which later evolved into a dance and electronica project. He then studied for a Master’s degree in cultural leadership before taking up his current role. (Photo: Stine Thomas Larsen)



John Kieser (Canada/US)

General manager, San Francisco Symphony

As general manager of the San Francisco Symphony (SFS), John Kieser is responsible for the planning and management of concerts, presentations, facilities and capital projects. He also oversees the work of SFS Media, the orchestra’s in-house media division. In addition, he manages touring, retail and the orchestra’s relationship with the unions. (Photo: Terrence McCarthy)

Gerald Mertens (Germany)

Managing editor, Magazine 'das Orchester'

Gerald Mertens is head of the Deutsche Orchestervereinigung (German Orchestras' Association) and managing editor of the international magazine 'das Orchester'. He has also published a book on orchestra management and writes a blog on this subject. (Photo: Foto Eden)

Christian Scheib (Austria)

Artistic director, ORF Radio Symphony Orchestra Vienna

Christian Scheib is artistic director of the ORF Radio Symphony Orchestra Vienna, where he has produced large-scale orchestral projects such as Orchestra Miniatures and Greatest Hits for Contemporary Orchestra. He has also worked as a festival director, university lecturer, author, editor and radio journalist.(Photo: Lukas Beck)

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