Virtual Peer Forums

Virtual Peer Forums (VPFs) are peer-to-peer conversations led by a facilitator and designed to connect you with your counterparts at other orchestras and ensembles in the ACSO membership network. This is a space to discuss working during times of transition, to exchange ideas, to ask questions, to share challenges, and to offer practices that have worked well (or not) for you and your organization. Most importantly, it is an opportunity to strengthen your professional networks and find colleagues to rely on for support.

VPFs are complimentary for members and $10 for not-yet-members. Registration is required. We limit the groups to 20 participants to maximize conversation and allow everyone to participate. Email [email protected] with questions or registration assistance.

Click here to review the ACSO Peer Group Attendance Policy before you register.


FALL 2022 VIRTUAL PEER FORUM SCHedule

The following Virtual Peer Forums are scheduled between October and December 2022. 

All VPFs are 60 minutes and take place from 12:00-1:00 PM PT. Peer Forums on the same day will take place concurrently.


TUESDAY, OCTOBER 11
12:00-1:00 PM PT

Executive Directors of Professional Orchestras Under $1 Million
Facilitators: 
Sarah Weber, Executive Director, Association of California Symphony Orchestras
Who should attend
EDs of professional orchestras (both CBA and non-CBA) with operating budgets under $1 million.
REGISTER

Education and Community Engagement Staff
Facilitator: 
Jesse Schiffman, Manager of Learning and Community Engagement, San Diego Symphony
Who should attend:
 Staff who deliver school, youth, family, or community-based music education programs at orchestras of any budget size.
REGISTER


TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 1
12:00-1:00 PM PT

Finance & HR Staff
Facilitators: Alicia Gonzalez, Director of HR & Maureen Melville, CFO, San Diego Symphony
Who should attend: Staff who work in human resources or finance at orchestras of any budget size.
REGISTER

Operations Staff
Facilitators: 
Issy Farris, VP of Operations and Education, Long Beach Symphony
Who should attend:  
Orchestra staff and volunteers who work in concert production and personnel management at orchestras and ensembles of any budget size.
REGISTER


TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 15
12:00-1:00 PM PT

Marketing & Patron Services Staff
Facilitators: Tiffany Fajardo, Patron Experience and Community Engagement Manager, Berkeley Symphony
Who should attend: Orchestra staff and volunteers who work in communications, marketing, PR, and patron services at orchestras and ensembles of any budget size.
REGISTER


TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 29
12:00-1:00 PM PT

Development Staff
Facilitator: Eman Isadiar, Director of Development, Santa Rosa Symphony
Who should attend: Orchestra staff and volunteers who work in fundraising (individual giving, major gifts, grant writing, events) at orchestras and ensembles of any budget size.
REGISTER

Music Festival Staff and Board Leaders
Facilitator: 
Jenny Darlington-Person, Executive Director, Music in the Mountains
Who should attend
Staff and board leaders who run seasonal classical music festivals of any budget size.
REGISTER


TUESDAY, DECEMBER 13
12:00-1:00 PM PT

Community Orchestra Staff and Board Leaders
Facilitators: Chelsea Chambers, Executive Director, Peninsula Symphony of Northern California
Who should attend: Staff and board leaders of orchestras made up of primarily volunteer musicians.
REGISTER

Youth Orchestra Staff and Board Leaders
Facilitators: 
Julia Copeland, Youth Orchestra Leader
Who should attend
Staff and board leaders of youth orchestras and ensembles of any budget size.
REGISTER

 

ACSO Peer Group Attendance Policy

ACSO may maintain up to twelve Peer Groups for Orchestra Professionals (subject to change):

  • CEOs of Orchestras with Budgets over $1 million
  • Executive Directors of Orchestras with Budgets Under $1 million
  • Youth Orchestra Staff and Board Leaders
  • Community Orchestra Staff and Board Leaders
  • Music Festival Staff and Board Leaders
  • Development Staff
  • Operations Staff
  • Education and Community Engagement Staff
  • Finance & HR Staff
  • Marketing & Patron Services Staff
  • Board Members/Trustees
  • Artistic Leaders & Musicians

ACSO Peer Group meetings (virtual or in-person) are only open to individuals who hold the relevant roles within an orchestra or music ensemble. You do not have to be part of an ACSO member orchestra to attend, but you must be associated with an orchestra or music ensemble. Because sensitive or confidential information may be shared, peer group meetings are not recorded and are not open to the public, including business members or other companies, unless specifically invited. Please do not register for a peer group meeting if you are not part of that peer group or your registration will be canceled.