Five ways entrepreneurship is essential to a classical music career

BY JEFFREY NYTCH

The other day, I posted something on my professional Facebook page about entrepreneurship and my compositional activities, and someone who I don’t know commented: “Forget entrepreneurship. Just compose.” (Well, they actually put it in somewhat more graphic terms, but in the interests of decorum…)

This sentiment is nothing new: resistance to “the e-word” continues; if anything it’s intensified in recent years as entrepreneurship has become an over-used buzzword. After all, when something becomes a buzzword it tends to be misappropriated (if not completely misunderstood), which in turn will inspire others to push back (sometimes, as with my commenter, quite bluntly).

Given this dynamic, clearing up common misunderstandings about the nature of entrepreneurship and how it can operate within our careers (as well as calling out those times when the term is too-casually thrown around) becomes all the more urgent for us arts entrepreneurship educators. In that spirit, I offer these five reasons why entrepreneurship is essential to a classical music career. I hope they might help you re-think “the e-word” and contemplate how it can empower your own career goals.

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