While musicians in an orchestra work hard on stage to perform beautiful music, there are many people who work hard off the stage to support these performance opportunities. Here are some behind-the-scenes roles in an orchestra.

Orchestra Librarian

An orchestra librarian manages all of the music that an orchestra plays. This includes ordering or renting copies of new pieces, distributing sheet music to musicians, and meticulously cataloguing music in a library system. They are also responsible for marking bowings and annotating each musician’s score.

Learn more about the Des Moines Symphony’s Orchestra Librarian Rachel Lowry.

Personnel Manager

The Personnel Manager is responsible for hiring substitute musicians, overseeing union compliance, and serving as a liaison between the musicians, music director, and administration staff. If there's something going on with the musicians, you can bet the Personnel Manager knows about it.

Learn more about the Des Moines Symphony’s Personnel Manager Clarence Padilla.

Marketing Team

The Marketing team oversees the promotional strategy and public relations for the orchestra. Their duties include creating and placing advertisements for the orchestra, creating marketing materials like posters and brochures, and creating a promotion strategy to maximize ticket sales.

Learn more about our Director of Marketing & Public Relations Calla Whipp and our Marketing Manager Olivia Guns

Director of Operations

The Director of Operations coordinates scheduling, equipment, and contract logistics. They rent any special instruments or equipment needed for a concert. At rehearsals and performances, they oversee stage setup and tear-down. They serve as the primary contact for guest artists and ensure that all of the artists’ needs are met.

Learn more about our Director of Operations Aaron Williams. Aaron is also the Des Moines Symphony's Principal Percussionist.

Executive Director

The Executive Director is like the CEO of the orchestra. They represent the orchestra at important events and oversee all business negotiations. They work closely with the Board of Trustees to make important decisions about the future of the organization.

Learn more about our Executive Director Richard Early.

General Administration

Like any business, an orchestra also needs people to oversee its finances and complete other administrative tasks. These people are vital to making sure that other staff members and musicians have the information and support they need to work effectively.

Visit our staff page to read more about our wonderful staff members!