Founded in 1919, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra (VSO) is one of the largest arts organizations in Western Canada, the third largest orchestral music organization in Canada, and one of the few orchestras in North America to have its own community music school. Maestro Otto Tausk will become Music Director beginning in July 2018 for the VSO’s 100th anniversary season, succeeding the VSO’s longest serving Music Director, Maestro Bramwell Tovey, who will assume the title of Music Director Emeritus.
The mission of the VSO is to enrich and transform lives through music. The VSO fulfills its mission by presenting passionate, high-quality performances of classical, popular, and culturally diverse music; creating meaningful engagement with audiences of all ages and backgrounds; and developing and delivering inspirational education and community programs. Performing more than 150 concerts per year throughout Vancouver, the surrounding communities, and the province of British Columbia, the VSO serves over 250,000 patrons annually, including 50,000 children and young adults. The VSO has an operating budget of $16 million, 104 full-time employees (70 musicians and 34 staff), and is governed by a 23-member board of directors.
The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra School of Music (VSO School of Music) is a purpose-built facility that opened in 2011. The VSO School of Music embraces a community-centered philosophy, with a vision to lead by leveraging the strengths of the VSO and its musicians through complementary and joyful learning experiences. It enriches the lives of students of all ages, infant through adult, by facilitating the learning, playing, and performing of the world’s great music. The VSO School of Music offers comprehensive and integrated programs taught by exceptional and passionate faculty whose goals are to engage and inspire students while celebrating their accomplishments.
Adjacent to the VSO’s primary performance venue, the Orpheum Theatre, the VSO School of Music is a modern educational institution where students of all ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds can enjoy lifelong learning. It serves approximately 1,600 students each year and caters to all ability levels, from beginner to aspiring professional. The VSO School of Music offers individual instruction and ensemble opportunities in a variety of genres, including classical, jazz, early learning, vocal arts, and world music. The VSO School of Music is governed by an eight-member board that oversees an annual program budget of $2 million.
The VSO School of Music is a state of the art urban learning centre that features:
The VSO has an impressive array of education and community programs that play an important part of its mission. The VSO education and community programs are self-sustaining through earned and contributed revenues against a program and department budget of $500,000. Recently, the VSO received a three-year (2017-2019) test grant from Vancouver Foundation of $225,000 to expand community engagement activities and social impact. VSO education and community programs include:
Vancouver was recognized as the top Canadian city by Travel + Leisure magazine’s 2014 World’s Best Awards. The city was also named the top Canadian destination by TripAdvisor’s 2016 Travellers’ Choice awards and was chosen as the best place to live in North America (and number five in the world) in Mercer’s 2016 Quality of Living survey. Vancouver offers residents both outstanding opportunities for outdoor adventure and the sophisticated amenities of a world-class city. The city is unique due to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, the beautiful Gulf Islands to the west, and the snow-capped Coast Mountains immediately to the north. It is home to the largest city park in North America, Stanley Park, as well as miles of easily accessible beaches and a spectacular city skyline. Hosting the Winter Olympics in 2010 galvanized Vancouver and gave rise to a glittering range of Olympic sporting facilities. The Games were also the impetus for substantial improvements on the scenic Sea-to-Sky Highway. This connected Vancouver with its co-host Whistler, which is 100 kilometres to the north and one of the top skiing destinations in North America. The Canada Line, a new metro line that connects the southern suburb of Richmond with the airport and the downtown core, opened late 2009.
Vancouver is an ethnically diverse city. Approximately 50 percent of Vancouver’s residents and about 44 percent of Metropolitan (Greater) Vancouver’s residents do not identify English as their first language. Vancouver takes pride in its status as one of the world’s best cities in which to live and is renowned for its innovative programs in the areas of environmental sustainability, accessibility, and inclusivity. British Columbia, with Vancouver as its commercial hub, has one of Canada’s most prosperous economies. The city is among the country’s largest industrial centres and has a highly diversified economy, with Canada’s largest port handling $200 million of cargo per day.
A vibrant, growing film industry has developed in Vancouver–or “Hollywood North,” as it is sometimes described–producing the second largest number of television shows of any location in North America. The city’s rich cultural background has helped produce a spectrum of artistic expression and a thriving creative community. Numerous annual festivals bring excitement to Vancouver, including the Honda Celebration of Light, TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival, Vancouver Folk Music Festival, and Vancouver International Children’s Festival. Vancouver is home to more than 50 professional theatre companies, a major international theatre festival (Vancouver Fringe Festival), two outdoor theatrical events (Bard on the Beach and Theatre Under the Stars), and the Vancouver Opera. Vancouver’s dance scene is one of Canada’s best, with regular performances by Ballet BC and more than 25 other local professional dance companies.
Rogers Arena and BC Place, the two stadiums in downtown Vancouver, host concerts for large scale, international musical stars and professional sports teams. Vancouver has two major universities, The University of British Columbia (UBC) and Simon Fraser University. Vancouver also features several community colleges, the Emily Carr University of Art and Design, the Vancouver Film School, and high-quality elementary and high schools.
Sources: edited from hellobc.com; livingin-canada.com; tourismvancouver.com; vancouversymphony.ca; vsoschoolofmusic.ca
The Vice President, VSO School of Music & Community Programs (VP) will be a strategic thinker and leader responsible for overseeing all aspects of education, community programs, and the VSO School of Music. Reporting to the President and working closely with the Music Director and other senior management colleagues, the VP will be the senior music educator who will ensure that educational and learning programs are integrated into a comprehensive approach that complements and leverages the artistic strengths of the VSO. The VP will evaluate, enhance, and expand education programs; foster deep relationships with educators; offer programs of the highest quality and variety; build programs that provide an unparalleled learning experience; enhance participation in music; and connect the VSO to communities in Greater Vancouver and beyond.
Stakeholder Engagement and Satisfaction
Community Outreach and Revenue Enhancement
Program Evaluation, Development, and Delivery
Financial and Operational Management
The VP will greatly value and be motivated by the knowledge, continuing education, intellectual growth, and creative self-expression that artistic endeavors provide. Deeply people-oriented, the VP will have effective interpersonal skills as well as a competitive drive for excellence. A mentor with the ability to earn the respect of seasoned educators, musicians, faculty, and staff, the VP will be a facilitator who builds consensus among diverse stakeholder groups while delivering superior programs and services. This individual will be an open and confident educator who enjoys exploring program development and the delivery of ideas through to successful implementation. The VP will have a passion for music education and advocacy for its importance.
Other key competencies include the following:
Qualified applicants must have a master’s degree in music education, performance, arts administration, or related field as well as a minimum of five to seven years of related senior management experience. In addition to expertise in the listed roles and responsibilities, the successful candidate must be committed to music education, as both a vocation and avocation, and to the concept that music is a core element in a holistic approach to human development at all stages of life.
The VSO offers a competitive salary and benefits package that includes extended medical insurance (group health and dental), paid time off, 5 percent contribution to a RRSP plan, short and long-term disability insurance, and the quality of life that Vancouver offers.
Please submit a letter and resume (electronic submissions preferred) with a summary of demonstrable accomplishments to:
Mr. Martin Bragg
Senior Vice President
1811 4th Street SW, Suite 523
Calgary, Alberta T2S 1W2
Tel (888) 234.4236 Ext. 205
The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra is an equal opportunity employer that
welcomes any qualified and values diversity, equity, access, and inclusion.
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