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Tony Woodcock
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Tony Woodcock is a leading pioneer in the field of arts management and music education. At the heart of his work is a dedication to positioning future generations of artists as independent innovators and community leaders. Tony was President of New England Conservatory from 2007-2015, following a transcontinental career managing orchestras including Minneapolis, Oregon, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Bournemouth Symphony. A veteran fundraiser, negotiator and institutional reformer, he has made dynamism and fresh ideas the foundation of his leadership, and has left a legacy of potent innovations still in evidence across the United States and Great Britain. As an orchestral CEO, he organized numerous international tours between Europe and the United States, successfully negotiated collective bargaining agreements with four major orchestras, and collaborated with a diverse array of celebrity talent, from Paul McCartney to Yakov Kreizberg. All of this was achieved against a backdrop of increases in audience and revenue. Tony studied at Cardiff University, where he was recently awarded an Honorary Fellowship. He now divides his time between southern Europe and NYC, teaching, writing, and consulting on projects. You can discover more about his work on his website: scolopaxarts.com.

Entries by Tony Woodcock

Nexus -- Part II

(0) Comments | Posted March 28, 2016 | 1:55 PM

In Pt. I, I described what I believe is the new paradigm for the teaching of music in Higher Education represented by USC's Thornton School of Music and looked at its Contemporary Music Division. In this installment, I will detail the cutting edge Popular Music program that I observed on...

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Nexus -- Part I

(0) Comments | Posted March 23, 2016 | 1:36 PM

2016-03-24-1458835397-1141313-2013usc.jpgI was recently on the west coast for a few days visiting the University of Southern California and the weather really wasn't what I was expecting. I stepped off the aircraft at LAX and suddenly found myself encountering a thunder and hail...

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When the Children Have Grown

(0) Comments | Posted March 4, 2016 | 4:12 PM

2016-03-03-1457046919-2538566-Paloma300px.jpgIn the new year of 2015, I was excited by the idea of welcoming Paloma O'Shea to New England Conservatory of Music as part of a short US tour she was undertaking with her colleagues from Madrid. I had heard so much...

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How to Change the World

(0) Comments | Posted February 19, 2016 | 2:58 PM

Do you remember that time in your youth when you talked about changing the world? It seemed as though that was our one and only mission, to turn the system on its head and make it so much better. The student riots in Paris in 1968 were a magnet and...

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The Violinist: A Tale for Valentine's Day

(0) Comments | Posted February 8, 2016 | 4:43 PM

It was dreadful. Just awful. But we had to walk that way to get to the best shops. Massimo Dutti, Boss, Armani and there was a deli nearby too which had sensational Jamon Iberico. So it was just too much bother to reroute and take the long way round. This...

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"Everything you've heard.........it's all true."

(1) Comments | Posted January 25, 2016 | 10:41 AM

Like millions of other people I couldn't wait for the premiere of the new Star Wars: The Force Awakens last December. I attended a few days after the crowds had dispersed, and sat there in rapt expectation, clutching my large bag of M&Ms. Then, there it was--the film I had...

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Top 10 of 2015

(0) Comments | Posted December 18, 2015 | 5:08 PM

For me, this has been an interesting year of travels, adventures in distant lands, and new experiences. Wherever I have gone, though, I've taken the opportunity to explore theatre and musical performances, film, art exhibits, and the most intriguing books. Given this peripatetic life, I've missed out on one or...

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'What Would You Do with a Blank Piece of Paper?' Pt. III

(0) Comments | Posted December 9, 2015 | 11:14 PM

In the previous two installments, I presented an overview of the Berklee College of Music's innovative Valencia campus and two of the four concentrations offered in its Master's program. In this final installment, I look at the other two concentrations, and ask how this curriculum compares...

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'What Would You Do With a Blank Piece of Paper?' Pt.II

(0) Comments | Posted December 8, 2015 | 11:44 AM

In my first installment, I looked at the creation of the extraordinary new campus and cutting edge curriculum that Berklee College of Music has developed in Valencia, Spain. In this second part, I examine two of the school's four concentrations.

The Global Entertainment and...

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'What Would You Do with a Blank Piece of Paper?' Part I

(0) Comments | Posted December 7, 2015 | 4:23 PM

2015-12-06-1449430973-4154397-Tonysshot.jpgIf you are a Star Trek fan, you can easily visualize this: A fleet of Klingon star ships decloaking and landing in a dry riverbed in the middle of a beautiful city. Because, to my eye at least, that is just what...

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Sorceress

(1) Comments | Posted November 24, 2015 | 1:36 PM

2015-11-17-1447789556-9908540-Spotify.svg.jpgI felt like a complete dinosaur the other day. I was introduced to the astonishing magic that is called Spotify, the media platform that can access any recording by anyone from any time and play it for you immediately and...

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Guns, Tanks, Man Utd, and 'Star Wars'

(0) Comments | Posted November 10, 2015 | 9:39 AM

2015-11-01-1446412822-8682013-Russiantanks.jpgWe have all come across the terms hard power and soft power as generic descriptions of various government policies and behaviors around the world. Hard Power is probably the one we are most familiar with, as it seems to manifest itself in...

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Journeys

(0) Comments | Posted October 15, 2015 | 2:59 PM

Many of the great composers who were also great performers were well known for championing the works of others. Mendelssohn, as conductor, was essential in restoring the nearly forgotten legacy of J.S. Bach. Similarly, he re-introduced Schubert who had all but disappeared to audiences in the mid-19th century.

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The Magic of Serendipity

(1) Comments | Posted September 29, 2015 | 6:55 PM

2015-09-29-1443540557-4250116-Concertgebouw__Amsterdam.jpgMy wife and I were recently in Amsterdam revisiting the major art museums and enjoying that wonderful freedom which makes this city so extraordinary. The weather had been really hot, which I don't associate with Holland at all, and on this particular...

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Conspicuous Consumption

(1) Comments | Posted September 8, 2015 | 2:32 PM

2015-09-08-1441729258-5135613-mercadocentralvalenciaalquilercoches.jpgThis will be the first ever blog I have written that is not devoted to music and the arts. What it is devoted to, however, is incredibly closely allied to music and musicians, something which musicians prize almost as much as their...

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Commencement Into This New World

(0) Comments | Posted May 19, 2015 | 5:34 PM

2015-05-15-1431707088-276241-Commencementgraduatesback.jpgMay is the season of Commencements and as New England Conservatory and other schools of music prepare to graduate a new class of wonderfully gifted, creative, and idealistic young musicians, one can't help but contemplate the world in which they will make...

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The Death of Liberal Arts? Or the Reunion of Broken Parts

(4) Comments | Posted April 24, 2015 | 3:05 PM

2015-04-24-1429896892-5801893-FareedZakaria300px.jpgMany of us have seen Fareed Zakaria on CNN hosting his own program focused on international affairs. His style of journalism and reporting is penetrating, analytical and smacks of an intelligence that seems all too rare on TV these days....

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Ran Blake and Film Noir

(0) Comments | Posted April 9, 2015 | 11:53 AM

2015-04-07-1428440338-7806260-Ran250px.jpgRan Blake was over at our house for dinner a while back, and at the end of the evening he asked me to show part of any movie that I considered extraordinary. I chose something contemporary, Melancholia, directed...

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Benjamin Franklin and the Reflective Conservatoire

(0) Comments | Posted March 25, 2015 | 8:27 AM

2015-03-23-1427125933-3666612-MiltonCourtext.jpg
I recently heard a mordantly humorous new take on Benjamin Franklin's most famous quote: "In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes and the immutability of conservatoires." I was at a major...

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Why Does London Need a New Concert Hall?

(0) Comments | Posted February 18, 2015 | 3:33 PM

2015-02-17-Rattle_BPHRittershaus2_Wi.jpgThere is a debate raging in London surrounding Sir Simon Rattle's apparent stipulation that he will only consider the London Symphony Orchestra's invitation to become their new Principal Conductor if the City fathers build him a new concert hall to replace the...

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