Administrative leadership and organizational structure of the American Symphony Orchestra: An internship report



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Texas Tech University


This dissertation is a report on a one-year internship sponsored by the American Symphony Orchestra League during which three American symphony orchestra administrations were studied. The orchestras examined included the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, The Phoenix Symphony, and the Omaha Symphony Orchestra. The orchestras varied in budget size, geographic location, organizational structure, socioeconomic environment and leadership approach by the executive director. Executive directorship of a symphony orchestra is by nature a complex and multifaceted job that necessarily involves every aspect of the organization, which will be evident throughout this report.

This is the first published study available regarding the comprehensive experience and intensive primary research of an ASOL intern. During the internship, I collected primary and investigative research during two to four month residencies with each orchestra. I lived in these cities and worked full-time with each administration with the purpose of thoroughly understanding the organizational structure and leadership style of each executive director. General principles and organizational practices observed and studied during my internship are discussed throughout the dissertation, and the final chapter summarizes my observations and draws general conclusions from the anecdotal and statistical data found in the preceding chapters.



Symphony orchestras -- Management, American Symphony Orchestra League- Administration