Holland Symphony Past & Present: Analysis of the Administration of This Semi-Professional Orchestra and Its Vital Role in the Community
Dr. Julia Randel
The Holland Symphony Orchestra began in 1927 as a small amateur group, and has since grown into a thriving semi-professional orchestra. This project used archival sources including concert programs, notes from meetings, and family documents to reconstruct the early history of the organization, in order to try to understand some of the keys to its success. From this case study it evident that a strong and central administrative role is needed in such an organization in order to keep it afloat. In his book The Art of the Turnaround, Michael M. Kaiser, the President of the John F. Kennedy Center, states that to run a successful arts organization a cycle is needed to promote and preserve the organization. A successful arts organization requires a cycle of four factors: great art, the marketing of that art, a supportive family, and revenue. When all four of these factors are sustained an arts organization will flourish. The evolution and growth of the Holland Symphony is correlated to ‘The Cycle’ laid out by Michael M. Kaiser. The increase in performers, venue size, marketing, and support the symphony has seen over the years is evidence that the community has found the Holland Symphony to be a vital source of musical entertainment and thus the administration has grown in direct relationship to Kaiser’s ‘Cycle’.
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