As we continue with our virtual season, the Schubert Club staff is still working predominantly from home. We checked in with our hard-working team to ask their favorite Schubert Club memories, what it’s like to work remotely, and how their roles have changed during the pandemic.

Read up on our other staff members!
Part One (Currently Reading): Janet Peterson, Kelsey Norton, Galen Higgins, and Anna Torgerson
Part Two: Kate Cooper, Miranda Kettlewell, Jessica Hastreiter, and Amy Marret
Part Three:  Kristina MacKenzie, Maximillian Carlson, and Barry Kempton

 


Janet Peterson – Business Manager:

How has your role changed during the pandemic?
There’s quite a bit of additional work involved with various COVID-related funding, accounting, and organizational policies and procedures — all of which is new and constantly changing. I think we’ve all listened to a lot of webinars this year.

Schubert Club has a very collaborative office culture – what is it like working remotely? 
I feel very lucky to have a home where I have both the space and the privacy to set up a remote office.  There are some advantages to working from home, and most of my work can be done that way, when my home internet is feeling cooperative.  My least favorite thing about working from home (besides simply missing the presence of my colleagues at work, who are fabulous people to hang out with) is that every bit of communication has to be intentional — You have to deliberately send a message or make a phone call or zoom.  There’s no casual conversation, no dropping by someone’s desk for a quick update, no overhearing a good idea or question, no give-and-take exchange of feelings and laughter and experiences.  I really miss that.

What is your favorite Schubert Club memory?
One day (pre-pandemic), Clara Osowski dropped by the office, handing out cups of Starbucks coffee to the staff, as a nice gift.  I asked her to autograph mine, and I still have the empty cup pinned to my bulletin board at work!  

What has helped you stay positive and keep busy during the pandemic?
Well for one thing, finally, after a lifetime of social awkwardness, at last there’s an advantage to being an extreme introvert! I’m normally fairly content with solitude, but even I have had my fill of it by this time, and am looking forward to a big hug from my kids and other family members and friends once we can get together again.


Kelsey Norton – Patron Relations Manager:

How has your role changed during the pandemic?
Pre-pandemic, an essential part of my role was managing the box office, so things of course changed quite a bit in the day-to-day once we stopped selling tickets! Though I still maintain subscriptions this season by processing requests in patrons’ accounts as well as offering assistance for any questions, my position has primarily focused on communications this year. Kristina and I work together daily to devise how to deliver clear messaging to our audience members to eliminate as much confusion as possible whenever plans change due to the pandemic and to continue to stay connected with our beloved Schubert Club family during this time. I always tease that we’re drafting strategies for plans A, B, C….through M. Things can change so quickly now – we’ve had to learn how to adapt and adjust fast!

Schubert Club has a very collaborative office culture – what is it like working remotely? 
I’ll be honest – it’s sad! I consider my coworkers all dear friends, and so the strong extrovert in me truly misses the daily connection. However, I feel so incredibly grateful to have leadership that prioritizes our safety and well being. Technology is indeed a blessing in that despite everything this year, I’m still able to communicate with my colleagues instantaneously through messaging and video calls. And we still keep it fun and support each other during stressful times!

What is your favorite Schubert Club memory?
So many! I remember one of the first concerts I worked was the “The Alehouse Sessions” by Barokksolistene with Bjarte Eike at Aria as part of Schubert Club Mix, and my coworkers encouraged me to go in and watch after intermission. I don’t think I’d ever had so much fun at a concert before. Incredible performers, venue, and audience. When I was walking to my car after it finished, I called my roommate right away and said, “Okay, so my job is really cool.”

What has helped you stay positive and keep busy during the pandemic?
I’m lucky to have the support system I have both personally and at work. I genuinely appreciate all the wonderful conversations and connections I’ve been able to have on the phones with our patrons these past few months and appreciate the kindness I have received. Outside of work, I tend to recharge by walking at the lakes, playwriting, singing, and checking in with old friends.


Galen Higgins – Graphic Designer:

How has your role changed during the pandemic?
Due to COVID, we’ve moved to presenting concerts online. Since joining the staff in 2018, video work has been a part of my role, but the last year has seen that role grow immensely. It has required some streamlining of our brand as it relates to video work, and planning for sometimes short turnarounds between recording and the final product. My work prior to COVID was probably 75% print related, and 25% digital, but this year those numbers have switched.

Schubert Club has a very collaborative office culture – what is it like working remotely? 
I still find it very collaborative, which I’m very happy about. We communicate frequently enough over Slack, Email, Google Meets, and Zoom, which has maintained our ability to come together on specific projects.

What is your favorite Schubert Club memory?
During COVID, probably the Lawrence Brownlee concert. It was the first time we’ve ever worked on that kind of livestream, where we watched the performance happen in real time. Most of our digital concerts are pre-recorded, and because of that we are able to ensure the quality of each video. In no way were we concerned about Lawrence Brownlee and Myra Huang’s performance as musicians, we just wanted to be sure the technical end ran smoothly, resulting in a wonderful viewing experience for all. Thankfully, with the help of SPCO’s streaming team, we were all able to produce what I think was a very special livestream performance.

What has helped you stay positive and keep busy during the pandemic?
Aside from the digital concerts and marketing needs, I’ve been working a lot on the Museum redesign. It has been a lot of work, but more importantly it has been a wonderful experience to share with a group of talented and insightful people. It’s hard to say whether this experience would have been the same without the precautions of COVID, but I’m very grateful nonetheless for how it turned out. Also, for however difficult 2020 was, the memes were exceptional.


Anna Torgerson – Executive Assistant and Artistic Coordinator:

How has your role changed during the pandemic?
Initially, my role changed entirely from planning concerts to postponing them – a complete 180! It was quite disheartening, but at the very least, I was so grateful that as an organization we were able to offer artists future engagements and good will payments, rather than just simply cancelling on everybody altogether. Fast-forwarding to a few months into the Covid-19 crisis, my role evolved into helping coordinate live streams and pre-recorded concerts, which has been quite a learning curve. This pandemic has been challenging and humbling for everyone, especially those working in the arts; but, I do see light at the end of this tunnel, and our whole staff will definitely be emerging from this experience with an expanded skillset!

Schubert Club has a very collaborative office culture – what is it like working remotely?
While it is nice to have the option to wake up 10 minutes before starting work (if I ever really want to), I truly miss working with my colleagues in the beautiful Landmark Center. I will say that I feel like communication between our staff has remained strong, despite not being able to simply walk into the next room when I need to ask someone a question. There have been many Zoom meetings and many more emails than there were before… thank goodness for modern-day technology!

What is your favorite Schubert Club memory?
There are many, but one memory I enjoy is when our staff decided at the spur of the moment to have a “spirit week”… you know, those themed dress-up days that you have when you’re in high school? My favorite days were 80’s day and pop star day. A quick sidenote: this was strategically planned during a week in the summer where we had no events planned, and could predict with almost 100% certainty that no one else from the “outside world” would be coming into the office. 

What has helped you stay positive and keep busy during the pandemic?
I have remained positive simply by knowing how fortunate I am to still have a job in the arts, and to work with such a great organization. One way I have stayed busy is sewing! I’ve been making all sorts of things. I’ve definitely picked up a new hobby, and I love it! I am also a singer and have been taking advantage of this time to brush up on my repertoire.


Make sure to check out our blog post next week for Part Two!

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