Behind the Scenes – Meet the Staff

What makes a great team?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Both onstage and off, orchestras are filled with teams – whether it’s the brass section getting a chord tuned just right, or the stage crew calling the light cue at the exact moment the music swells, or the administrative staff who manages the business and logistics for a concert – the art of being a team is central to the art of being an orchestra.

Today, I’m excited to introduce you to the Boise Phil administrative team. This small, but mighty, crew of individuals is the creative force that works behind the scenes to make sure that our artists and audiences can focus on the music.


Cameron BrizeeCAMERON BRIZZEE
Patron Services & IT Director

I manage the box office, subscriptions, front of house, and IT for the organization.

What’s a common misconception about your job? People often assume that the Morrison Center and the Boise Phil share a ticketing system, but we are entirely separate.

What do you wish people knew about your job? The Box Office staff is here to help our patrons with any problem, big or small. Don’t be afraid to ask.

If someone aspires to have your role, what advice would you like to share with them? Be creative, flexible, and patient when solving problems! Working for an orchestra can be a very different experience day-to-day.

Favorite Boise Phil moment: Watching The Empire Strikes Back with a live orchestra!

What do you do for fun? Exploring the beauty of Idaho – hiking, biking, camping, fly fishing, etc.


AMY GRANGER
Marketing Director

I’m zealous about the design and promotion of our amazing musicians and performances.

What’s a common misconception about your job? That marketing and design are frenemies. Since I do both, it’s more like besties.

What do you wish people knew about your job? I’m not selling a product, but rather an invitation to an experience.

If someone aspires to have your role, what advice would you like to share with them? Care.

Favorite Boise Phil moment:  John Cage’s 4’33” at my first Uncorked concert.

What do you do for fun? I like to build stuff, make stuff, glue stuff, paint stuff, sand stuff, and sew stuff.


ASHLEY GILLIS
Donor Relations Specialist

I have the opportunity to work with the most talented people, organize events, and show appreciation to the many people that support and love the Boise Phil.

What do you wish people knew about your job? I wish people had the opportunity to see what the Boise Phil truly means to our community and the passion people have for music in their lives. The arts community is so important!

If someone aspires to have your role, what advice would you like to share with them? The smallest detail can be the biggest decision.

Favorite Boise Phil moment: I would have to say attending my first concert as a Boise Phil staff member – seeing our patron’s love for music and my co-workers’ dedication to the Boise Phil – really the best memory.

What do you do for fun? Anything outdoors or with my three kids – hiking, camping, and horseback riding. I also consider myself a foodie, so trying new restaurants or cooking for friends and family is the best weekend!


DAN HOWARD
Director of Operations & Education

I wrangle dates and events, some dollars and cents, for all the adults and children in the Boise Phil fam.

What do you wish people knew about your job? That I’m in a room with five tribbles, wait, 10 tribbles… I mean 45… I mean 134…. (Translation: the job is filled with many fun things that need attention and if we aren’t prepared and organized it can get out of hand.)

If someone aspires to have your role, what advice would you like to share with them? Three things; 1) never take it personally. 2) leave work at work. 3) Be grateful every day. Remember this is a really good gig – you aren’t taking enemy fire, you aren’t cleaning up fluid spills in a hospital – you get to help musicians make music.

Favorite Boise Phil moment: There’s A LOT to choose from – Star Wars. Playing the music live to the film was a literal dream come true. Radical!!!

What do you do for fun? Camping/fishing in the middle of nowhere especially when it’s deep in the mountains and surrounded by old-growth forest. That’s my heaven.


Gordon HynesGORDON HYNES
Director of Finance

I track and report the financial aspects of the orchestra.

What’s a common misconception about your job? That financial stuff is boring.

What do you wish people knew about what you do? Finance touches everything – the more information the finance department has, the better it can help all the others.

If someone aspires to have your role, what advice would you like to share with them? Learn to work with a variety of people and personality types.

Favorite Boise Phil moment: When the music director appeared on stage as superman.

What do you do for fun? I enjoy hiking, motorcycles, woodworking, fishing, writing.


Nickie SchellNICKIE SHELL
Patron Services Admin

I take care of people – be they patrons, musicians, staff, board members or just ordinary folks answering questions, directing phone calls, booking tickets, processing donations and acknowledgment letters, and any other job I can do while sitting at my desk!

What do you wish people knew about what you do? I would like people to know how much I enjoy conversing with everyone and what a great place to work this is. I love my job!

If someone aspires to have your role, what advice would you like to share with them? For someone aspiring to my job: knowing a little about a lot, enjoying meeting many different people and liking repetitive work are huge advantages.

Favorite Boise Phil moment: Working on our updated season plans for the 2020-2021 season. It was empowering to contribute and work together as a team and I’m full of excitement for the promise of a new and dynamic future.

What do you do for fun? Outside of work I enjoy grandkids, playing with fabric and yarn, reading a lot, hanging out in my garden swing watching the birds and trees, and clouds – it’s very peaceful.


Joanne TaylorJOANNE TAYLOR
Director of Advancement

I manage all aspects of charitable giving, along with our relationships with the many wonderful individuals, corporations and foundations that support our mission.

What’s a common misconception about your job? That fundraising is a glamorous and relatively simple job. There is a high degree of planning and strategy involved in fundraising, with a great need for meticulous attention to detail. It involves the management of a database and several software platforms. It also involves manual labor–for set up and tear down of events – and requires a great amount of teamwork.

What do you wish people knew about your job? It’s the toughest but most rewarding job I’ve had. I’ve developed many friendships through fundraising.

If someone aspires to have your role, what advice would you like to share with them? Study the craft. There is an art and science to fundraising. Most importantly, put people before money. It’s a people business and you must genuinely like, enjoy and have an interest in people to succeed.

Favorite Boise Phil moment: Associate Concertmaster Chia Li warming up the orchestra while Dan Howard and I came on the stage to thank our donors, all of us off cue, then laughing through what could have been an awkward moment.

What do you do for fun? Spending time with my two teenage daughters, traveling, gardening, hiking, playing piano, friends and family.


Melissa WilsonMELISSA WILSON
Librarian

I research, obtain, prepare, and distribute sheet music to musicians for our concerts, and other duties as assigned.

What’s a common misconception about your job? That it’s not a labor-intensive job. For some concerts, I may handle around 1,000 different pieces of music!

What do you wish people knew about your job? That it takes an incredible level of focus, organization, patience, and that you actually do have to be a musician to successfully perform your duties.

If someone aspires to have your role, what advice would you like to share with them? There is a lot of repetitive, and seemingly thankless work involved.

Favorite Boise Phil moment: Oh gosh – there are so many! We are so lucky to have such a wonderful orchestra, and amazing guest artists join us every season. All of our guest artists are masterful at immediately pulling the audience in. One that stands out in a really special way in my mind was Joseph Fire Crow’s performance of Jim Cocky’s “Gift of the Elk” in 2016. Joseph’s performance was transcendent, and he was able to inspire something far more than admiration and respect. He filled the entire concert hall with a sense of peace and unity that I think we rarely have the honor of experiencing.

What do you do for fun? I love playing music with my partner, Bernie. I also enjoy investing my time working on our wonderful “fixer-upper”, playing with our two cats Blu and Simon, watching our chickens Harriette and Claire futz around while I work in the yard, eating beautiful food, and having a few hiking adventures in the beautiful wilderness of Idaho.

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