This project was a tremendous exercise in collaboration at Peabody, bringing together staff and faculty across the Institute who worked as a team to create something meaningful.

Zane Forshee, Christina Manceor, and Robin McGinness were at the core of this book having dedicated countless hours to developing a scaffolded curriculum that supports hundreds of students each academic year, at the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University, as they navigated the transition from student to working professional artists. The course developed by this team of authors, Pitching Your Creative Idea, was the spark that ignited the ideas, exercises, and principles that you will encounter in the pages ahead. More importantly, this book was directly influenced by the 600+ students that have taken this course over the past four years and the authors desire to create a guide that helps artists build sustainable, satisfying, and rewarding creative lives. This book and the curriculum from which it was inspired drew upon years of collective experience from performing artists actively working in the field and was a tool built by artists for artists to thrive in the 21st century.

Kathleen DeLaurenti’s advocacy for open educational resources was instrumental from inception to every detail of this project. We appreciate her passion for inclusive pedagogy along with the guidance on copyright and publishing practices as all inform both the book and the team. Valerie Hartman and Joseph Montcalmo created the context within which this project became reality by creatively repurposing existing infrastructure and resources. Valerie Hartman provided instructional design, project management, and information architecture throughout the project. Joseph Montcalmo provided ongoing feedback as well as leadership in navigating challenges, while creating a sustainable model for the development of open educational resources within Peabody. Sarah Thomas provided feedback, additional research, and proofreading throughout the writing and development process. Her ability to juggle the big picture alongside her attention to detail allowed each chapter to shine.

The experience and perspectives of working artists was invaluable in crafting both the curriculum and this book. The interviews provided insights far beyond what we expected and we are grateful for their dedication to mentoring our students and sharing their hard-earned wisdom with you here. We want to thank Brad Balliett, Jeannie Howe, Andrew Kipe, Alysia Lee, Christina Manceor, Wendel Patrick, Lara Pellegrinelli, CJay Philip, Adam Rosenblatt, Jessica Satava, Khandeya Sheppard, and Ian Tresselt.

The Louisville Orchestra helped us articulate the complex ideas of audience research to our students. It was thanks to them graciously sharing their detailed story of reconnecting with the Louisville, Kentucky community we can share these insights with you.

Two visual artists also supported the project. Ben Johnson from our marketing department designed the book cover. Don Lowing brought the content to life with clever illustrations that exceeded all expectations. Several Peabody students provided examples of grant applications, including Mafalda Santos and Maddalena Ohrbach. Behind the scenes, Peabody student Zivi Osher converted interactive course materials to manuscripts for initial review and editing.

Several colleagues reviewed the manuscript and provided insightful feedback: Marci Cohen of Boston University, Matthew Vest of the University of California at Los Angeles, producer and composer David Revill, and Jeannie Howe of the Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance. Thank you for graciously sharing ways to improve the project and to better reach performing artists.

Finally, this project would not have been possible without the support and encouragement of Peabody’s Dean Fred Bronstein and the executive leadership team at the Peabody Institute: Abra Bush, Bob Halbrunner, Sarah Hoover, Paul Mathews, Townsend Plant, and Samuel Wilson. Thank you for the faith in our teams to share our work as an open resource for artists everywhere.



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The Path to Funding Copyright © 2022 by John Hopkins University is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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