Carren's Pitch

Life by Design


Fueled by Passion

Posted by Carren |

When I pitched this assignment, I bit off more than I could chew. I didn't realize what an undertaking it would be to round up some of the Spoleto USA Festival's busiest members. It was worth it though. The piece turned out well with a little bit of luck and fortitude.


Freelance orchestra musicians juggle many jobs to survive
Text by: Carren Jao
Published: Post & Courier (print and web), 08 June 2010

Photo by: William Struhs
At the Spoleto USA Festival's last orchestral concert Sunday, instruments gleamed and a multilayered majestic sound rose triumphantly into the air. The audience was rapt.

It may seem glamorous, but for the young orchestra musicians who have been performing in the Spoleto USA Festival this month, theirs is a life of uncertainty. Year-round, they have to be master jugglers, balancing auditions and rehearsals with other short-term projects or part-time jobs.

"It is not uncommon to have as many as a half-dozen employers in a month," said Aubrey Foard, 28, principal tubist.

Members of the cello section of the Spoleto Festival Orchestra rehearse. They often move from festival to festival in order to work steadily. Auditions become a way of life.
"Is it a challenge? Yeah. Oh yeah." He says of his musical career, "But as far as priorities go. There's no question. I wake up and tuba is the one thing that I focus on." [Read more]

Photo credit: William Struhs provided by Spoleto USA Festival


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