Amanda Grady_Member Spotlight

Amanda Grady

Group and Corporate Sales Coordinator, The Philadelphia Orchestra

 

 

1. What is your role with the Philadelphia Orchestra?

I am currently the Group and Corporate Sales Coordinator with The Philadelphia Orchestra. In this role I, along with the Group and Corporate Sales Manager, manage all marketing and management of inbound group and tourism travel to The Philadelphia Orchestra. Our groups can range anywhere from students both traveling to Philadelphia from across the country and located here on the east coast, senior citizen groups, university alumni groups, corporate groups, etc. We are also responsible for managing all things related to the Young Friends of The Philadelphia Orchestra and our college student membership program eZseatU.

2. Tell me about your experience with managing and growing the Philadelphia Orchestra’s Young Friends Program.

The Philadelphia Orchestra’s Young Friends program is quite a unique and in my opinion, exciting program to manage. When I began with The Philadelphia Orchestra, our Young Friends program (which was actually launched at a YPN event!) was only two years old and we had a membership base of 600 members and held about 2 Young Friends events per season. In the last two years we have grown our membership base to 1,400 members (and growing) and are now managing about 5 Young Friends events per season. We attribute this success to the growing curiosity of Young Philadelphians who are looking to get involved with what this city has to offer; and with one of the top orchestras in the nation right in our back yard, it’s hard to ignore the magnetism of this program.

We understand that growing our patron base via a younger generation is instrumental to maintaining this institution’s success, and so that is the reason that we place such a heavy importance on our Young Friends program. Now for a shameless plug: It is FREE to join and I highly encourage everyone, whether they’re classical music fans or not, to check it out! www.philorch.org/youngfriends

3. You’re a volunteer with a couple different arts organizations – Emerging Arts Leaders: Philadelphia and Arts and Business Council: Business Volunteers for the Arts. What attracted you to get so involved in the arts scene?

I think that growing up as a child in an extremely art-centric household; I understand first hand just how influential art and music can be in people’s lives. I grew up as a dancer, in a house that would have musicals on repeat in the CD player, trips to NYC and Philadelphia almost monthly and I truly credit a majority of my professional progress to this exposure to the arts. Therefore, I strongly believe that without making these art forms readily available, and without passionate volunteers who are willing to donate their time and knowledge, the arts scene will never have the opportunity to thrive and positively impact the lives of others. Giving young people access to the arts whether it’s through education in schools, availability of music in households, student ticket programs, and volunteer opportunities; we can truly change the young population here in Philadelphia.

I’ve been privileged enough to live in a cultural hub of artists and I can only hope that reaching out to young people not just in the tri-state area but all over the country will evoke the involvement and support which is necessary to keep this industry alive. And so as a result, one thing that I find to be of extreme importance to me is giving back to the arts community that had been so influential to me in my lifetime.

4. How long have you been a YPN member? How has being involved with YPN benefitted you?
I joined YPN in November of 2013, and so I’ve been a member for a little over a year. I believe that YPN has been extremely beneficial for both my personal and professional development here in Philadelphia. I moved to Philadelphia in September of 2013 and seeing as I was new to living in this city, I was itching to get out there and meet other like-minded professionals.

The first step that I took was to attend a YPN event and from that moment on, I’ve reaped the benefits of having an organization like this in our city. Not only have I made lifelong friends and business connections, but also met networking buddies of whom I frequently see at other events throughout the city.

5. Which YPN event have you found to be most interesting? Why?

Oh boy, that is definitely a hard question! I would have to say that it is a toss-up between the “Unplugged” event at the National Constitution Center when Deputy Mayor Alan Greenberger spoke to us regarding the state of Philadelphia and what YPN members and the business community can do to become more engaged in helping the City and the event at NextFab studio where we got to see first-hand just how innovative the folks in this city are. The thing that I found interesting about these events was seeing just how much the young people in Philadelphia care about the future of this city, and just how influential our generation is to sculpting the direction of Philadelphia.

6. YPN has a professional development bookshelf. Is there a book that you’re currently reading or have read in the past that you would recommend?

I constantly find myself re-reading Dale Carnegie’s, “How to Win Friends and Influence People”. If you have never read it, I strongly suggest that you do!

7. What piece of advice would you offer college seniors looking for their first professional job?

Get involved, push your boundaries, ask questions, and meet as many people as you can! You never know who you will meet that could advance you in your professional career, and what direction they could take you in. This is the time to make mistakes and get out of your comfort zone, so don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Also, don’t be too prideful to work for free; everyone needs to start somewhere and volunteering your time only shows your dedication and dependability to a potential employer or mentor.

8. When not working or volunteering, how do you spend your down time?

When I am not volunteering or working, you will most likely find me either cooking or spending time with my family or friends. Making time for family and friends is extremely important to me and whenever I have a busy week, I always unwind in the kitchen!