Dear Colleague,

As we enter the third month of the global pandemic and consider the uncertainty and tough road ahead, I’m reminded of a lesson made popular by business guru Jim Collins: the Stockdale Paradox. Admiral James Stockdale was a Navy pilot captured in the Vietnam War and tortured over a period of six years. He survived, and upon returning home wrote about his experience in captivity and reflected on the prisoners who lived, and those who died. Stockdale observed that the ones who survived we’re the ones who could hold two completely opposite ideas at the same time: the recognition that their situation was brutal and unrelenting; and the unwavering conviction that they would still prevail.

Living with this paradox seems right to me. My own conviction that we will get through this is not just a sheer act of will. It is buttressed by seeing the enduring values in our field come in to play: the irrepressible desire of musicians to share their gifts; demonstrating another paradox: playing together while being apart; the strengthening bonds of colleagues as they eagerly and frequently connect to exchange information, learn together and support one another; and the spirit of shared sacrifice and pursuit of equitable solutions.

All of us at the League are inspired by all of you. Our work now is guided by three imperatives:

  • Help orchestras address immediate hardship with real time tactical support
  • Unite our community and leverage its collective strength
  • Hold fast to our vision for vibrant and civically engaged music making and organizations.

Below I am happy to share some of our recent work that realizes these principles.


Webinars on federal relief

Individualized legal assistance on federal relief

Executive 1:1 Consultations

National Conference

Fundraising webinars

Symphony Spot website

Thank you for your time and attention. Thank you for everything you are doing to advance the orchestral experience in these times.


Jesse Rosen
President and CEO, League of American Orchestras


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