A Life between Creativity and Administration
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A Life between Creativity and Administration

ALAN FLETCHER, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE ASPEN MUSIC FESTIVAL AND SCHOOL AND ALSO A RESPECTED COMPOSER, TELLS BOCCONI STUDENTS HOW HE MANAGES TO BE BOTH AN EXECUTIVE AND A CREATIVE

"I never wanted to be an executive, I always wanted to be a composer," admits Alan Fletcher to the student audience. And in fact composing music is exactly what he does, for about 3 months a year, in a house in front of the ocean. The time that remains, however, he plays the role of manager, more precisely the CEO and Director of the Aspen Music Festival and School, a classical music festival renowned not only for its concert programming, but also for the musical training it offers to mostly young-adult music students from over 40 countries around the world. It is this dual identity, and its advantages, that Fletcher discussed during the latest ‘Broaden Your Frame’, a series of meetings organized by the Bocconi Graduate school. "I'm both an executive and a creative, but in a world that attaches great value to multitasking, I prefer to be one of two things once at a time," he says.

"Alan Fletcher is an example of the virtuous application of managerial approaches in cultural contexts. A passionate and competent man, a successful composer, who has found the right combination and mediation between art and the market", says Andrea Rurale, professor and director of the Master in Arts Management and Administration (MAMA). "The great success of the festival that he organizes in a small town of 6000 inhabitants is an example”.

In his life, his long-term vision and problem-solving attitude led him to be chosen for executive roles from an early age, starting with the New England Conservatory of Music, where he initially taught and shortly afterwards ended up becoming Dean, Rector and Vice President.  "Being a good executive means having a long-term vision and knowing what the company or institution will have to be like in 10, 20, 30 years time, and waiting day by day for the right moment to take very small steps to achieve the big goal," Fletcher explains. "And remember: you have to solve more problems than you create”.

by Benedetta Ciotto

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