I enjoy participating in sports, but I don’t follow any professional teams. So I found it highly amusing to join the Orchestra for the Vikings’ home opener at the new stadium. I laughed the entire evening—that is, until it was time to go on the field with 66,000 people staring down at us. I almost fainted, then almost threw up, then went ahead and did my job and it all turned out fine. I shot this photo with my iPhone as we exited the field, and it was the farthest-reaching photo the Minnesota Orchestra Facebook page has ever had:
When the Orchestra travelled to New York City in early March, I knew many of our fans were wishing—just like I was—that they could go along. When WQXR in New York announced they would broadcast our performance live, I decided to host a listening party on Facebook. It didn’t reach a massive number of people, but the people who did participate were very excited.
It got quite lively, with lots of visitor posts, pictures from Twitter, questions about encores, etc. It was a great test to see how enthused our fans are for this sort of engagement. See the page on Facebook.
I don’t know if I really had a choice in the matter, but I’ve really come to love the music of Jean Sibelius during my time at the Orchestra. It was absolutely thrilling to shoot, trim and publish this video of Osmo and the orchestra along with the YL choir of Finland performing Finlandia:
I first had the idea for this 404 page back in 2011. But I thought there was no way that our musicians would agree to it, so I kept putting off asking them. Then we had a long period of time where the musicians were locked out in a labor dispute, so of course lots of things got put on hold.
I finally worked up the courage to ask this summer, and the trombones loved the idea. I knew I wanted a video of #sadtrombone, but I didn’t really plan much beyond that.
The day I shot this video, I came back to my desk, sat down, and suddenly the copy just came to me and I quickly built the page. This was such a fun project and has been very well-received by orchestra fans. Special thanks to the Minnesota Orchestra trombone section for agreeing to do this!
It’s such a rare and wonderful thing when you have an idea that solves multiple problems. After the Orchestra made its big comeback last year, we identified several website-related problems in want of a solution.
In January of this year I was finally able to launch a project I’ve dreamed about since I started, five years ago: a redesign of the ticketing system. The simple reason this project took so long was that we lacked the internal resources to pull it off. When I got permission to hire the Orchestra’s very first web developer one year ago, this was the very first priority I had in mind.
My developer, a freelance designer, and I brainstormed what would be the best possible user experience for selecting seats for an orchestra concert and purchasing them, and then whittled down our list to what was actually possible within our existing ticketing system.
I art directed mockups and oversaw the project that brought us to a completely new and much more tablet-optimized ticketing experience (full mobile optimization is still forthcoming), launching just 7 months after our developer first started. For the full experience, visit minnesotaorchestra.org and click on any “BUY” button for a concert.
Here it is: one of the very first performing arts organizations in the Twin Cities to launch a responsive website, and one of the first Orchestras in the nation. I could not be prouder of my work on this website, which was lengthy and extensive. (View website).
This was my second overhaul of minnesotaorchestra.org since I started in March 2010, and this second launch exceeded even my own lofty goals.