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Road of Creativity Blog

How Playing Fearlessly Leads to Reinvention: Recommended Reading List

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The Road of Creativity and Kristen McKeon of D’Addario recently presented a new workshop, How Playing Fearlessly Leads to Reinvention. The topic was born from months of inquiry about risk and fear, ultimately leading to the deeper question, “what is your bottom line as a human being (and musician)?” That if your bottom line is identified and adhered to in the most important aspects of your life, doesn’t it seem probable that fear might lessen or subside, which in turn stands to strengthen your ability to take greater risks in all aspects of your life? Read More

“Let’s take a walk…”

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…is what my student said to me when he arrived for his saxophone lesson in early December. While we were both reluctant to admit it, this particular lesson was significant because it was his final weekly lesson of his undergraduate degree before his student teaching assignment this coming spring semester.

With curiosity, I obliged his invitation, because after all, I have been lobbing seemingly non-lesson related questions and statements at him for the past four years. There were times he would arrive for his weekly lesson and we would talk about mountain biking. Read More

Left Behind

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Most of my saxophone colleagues are gathered in Scotland this week for the World Saxophone Congress – an international gathering of saxophonists that occurs every three years in a different country.  Those of us not there are fortunately (or perhaps unfortunately) experiencing it through social media.  Lots of photos, travel updates and beer and scotch status updates are blowing up our newsfeeds, and updates about the performances are beginning to stream in. Read More

5 Entrepreneurial Pillars of Performance

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Check out this video of Taimur Sullivan and me performing “Black” for two baritone saxophones by Marc Mellits.  If you are like most people, your reaction to this video has to do with the music, composer,  performance, performers or instruments – definitely something performance-related.  What most people don’t realize are five entrepreneurial principles that were critical for bringing this performance to the stage: Read More

Spotlight on Anne Midgette, Washington Post Music Critic

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If you’re aspiring to make a career out of music, I’m sure this thought has crossed your mind: How do I get discovered?

For as much as we love music for its own sake, it’s easy for musicians to become consumed with what others think about the music we make. We think that if only we can earn the stamp of approval from a noteworthy name, the rest of our career will magically fall into place. But is that really true? And with so many great musicians out there, how can any one artist hope to snag the attention of the critics and audiences? Read More

Landing the Job Despite Scary Odds

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By Brittney Saline and Connie Frigo

Statistics are interesting, don’t you think? We use them to gauge the likelihood of success or as a way of summarizing the state of affairs in a given population. Sometimes they’re just entertaining bits of trivia (at the time this post was written, there were over 187,000,000,000 emails sent today worldwide*). You can’t let statistics run your life, but sometimes they’re worth paying attention to – so that you can take measures to make sure you come out in the favorable percentage. Take this statistic, for instance: in the academic year of 2010/2011, there were only 52 job openings for woodwinds in university music programs across the US, including adjunct and combined positions. Not a woodwind player? Well, there were only 40 openings for brass, and 39 for strings.  And that’s an improvement from the year prior, when there were only 27 for woodwinds, 21 for brass and 42 for strings.** Read More

Musician: Master of Many Trades

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Most musicians know that a career in music rarely consists of one “job,” complete with your name on the door and regular hours. Even if their primary source of income comes from a consistent teaching or performing gig, most musicians wear many hats and juggle several positions at once. Read More

Bridging Musicians & the Music Industry

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By Brittney Saline, Assistant to Connie Frigo, Director of Road of Creativity

Who comes to mind when you think of the music community? Musicians. Teachers, students, audiences. Maybe sound engineers. But did you ever think about industry as being part of the arts world? The companies that dedicate their time and resources to crafting the products you rely on to make the best music you can make? Read More

How To Write a Compelling Bio

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Welcome back author Brittney Saline.  Brittney is a musician with a serious knack for pen and paper, the ability to see other people’s strengths and a desire to help them pull it all together.  She’s a researcher, consultant and the best assistant I could ever hope for at the Road of Creativity.   Read on as she shares tips on how to write an engaging bio that goes beyond a list of accomplishments. Read More

Making It in the (Chamber) Music World – with PRISM Quartet

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Brittney Saline, assistant to Road of Creativity founder Connie Frigo, is the author of this behind the scenes glimpse into PRISM.

Last week we asked you if you knew what it takes to make it in the music world. Bassoonist Michael Harley and expert leadership consultant Meredith Kimbell shared with us their excellent insight into the foundations of “making it,” focusing on building relationships and taking risks.  Read their insights here. Read More