PT95: “Finding Comfort in Who You Are,” Anna Edwards on Seeking Diverse Stories, Embracing your Physicality, and Leading from Comfort

Today we talk with Anna Edwards, Music Director of the Seattle Collaborative Orchestra, the Saratoga Orchestra, and the Pacific Northwest Conducting Institute, about how and why to seek out music by underrepresented composers, why conductors (women especially) should embrace their own physicality and body type, and why being comfortable on the podium is critical to leadership.

Podium Time Episode 95: “Finding Comfort in Who You Are,”Anna Edwards on Seeking Diverse Stories, Embracing your Physicality, and Leading from Comfort

Today we discuss:

  • Anna’s journey to conducting through performance and education, and how she made the transition towards professional conducting and harder repertoire (1:07)
  • Programming works by a woman or BIPOC composer on every concert, and how Anna approaches commissioning new and fascinating collaborative pieces (6:16)
  • How Anna finds music by underrepresented composers, and the inception and evolution of her project “100 days of Social Distance Listening” (10:51)
  • About the Pacific Northwest Conducting Institute, and how Anna and Diane Wittry differ in teaching styles (21:40)
  • The surprising results of Anna’s research on female conductors, orchestra perceptions, and physicality (26:35)
  • Conducting and teaching for different body types (33:06)
  • Advice for young conductors on finding comfort with your leadership style (44:01)
  • Hidden Gems and Billboard (53:26)

Other links and topics:

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