​Interviews at MAMP Workshop Shine Light On Collaborations

Written By Josie Gulliksen
April 30, 2015 at 1:48 PM

​Interviews at MAMP Workshop Shine Light On Collaborations

Rather than have guest speakers address the crowd, the April Miami Arts Marketing Project workshop featured facilitator George Cuevas of Collab Miami conducting interviews with leaders from both the arts and business world. They focused on divulging info about their successful collaborative strategies.

Diane L. Ryan of Citibank and Todd Huestess of the New World Symphony discussed their collaborative project, the sponsorship of the free Wallcast concerts at Soundscape Park.

Citibank originally approached Huestess about sponsorship for an event they don’t host, making it the ideal opportunity for him to ask her about the Wallcast concerts. “The employees at Citibank had a renewed engagement with employees and they were proud of our collaboration with the Symphony. It was really an internal collaboration that we didn’t plan on but which benefitted us tremendously,” says Ryan.

“The fact that Ryan’s introductory speeches have drawn applause shows our crowds are educated and know the value this sponsorship has,” Huestess says.

Huestess credits their PULSE program with drawing new audiences to classical music. Ryan in turn said the Citibike effort is how they seek sustainable, larger collaborations that continue to give back to the community.

Innovation and the interest in bringing a new musical ensemble to Miami brought Stacey G. Mizener of Metro 1 Community and Sam Hyken of Nu Deco Ensemble together, who first forged a relationship when both were involved with New World Symphony and produced several shows together. Hyken immediately asked Mizener to be a founding Nu Deco board member.

Now at Metro 1 and knowing her CEO Tony Cho is an arts advocate, Mizener asked him to fund the performance space Wynwood Greenhouse, where Nu Deco would perform. The space should be completed by April 2016.

After a successful initial concert at what is still an open space, Hyken says “we’re looking forward to growing the ensemble and doing concerts at the Greenhouse. We need to spur the local community to work with our ensemble.”

For Stacey it’s all about “forming an interesting model and working together to think of creative ways to form a win/win situation.”

Basketball and piano slams may seem like an odd combo, but it works for Carlene Sawyer of Piano Dranoff 2/Piano Slam and Ted Ballard of the Miami Heat.

Because both have a common interest — the future of our kids — Ballard says “we connect with children much like Piano Slam does and the broader your reach is, the more chance you have of reaching people beyond your specific interests,” Sawyer says.

“The idea of young people being successful through music really clicked with the Heat so five years ago our collaboration began. That’s when the Heat players began reading poetry to the kids while simultaneously mentoring and inspiring the kids to always do their best. So far, they’ve reached 65,000 kids.

Ballard says that “you have to think about what assets could provide the most value to our organization. We give this event street credibility because the kids see athletes they admire reading poems.” The event has also attracted a younger demographic to the Dranoff’s board.

Dranoff has also been part of the yearly Heat Fan Fest, which makes for good neighborly community outreach beyond what the Heat organization’s usual scope.

Christine Corson of the Hotel Inter-Continental and Eric Schoenborn of Culture on Demand focused their interview primarily on the digital marketing and the exterior digital image on the side of the building. It’s the hotel’s marquee spot where the digital dancers tower over the skyline.

Seeing them as a hotel that fully supports the arts, their mission is simple, to use the most public spots to do what Corson calls “an arts takeover of the hotel. We do that through the use of the lobby display and other digital boards that are fully incorporated throughout the hotel.”

Then came coffee and the Bakehouse — Adon Williams of Mad Chiller coffee and Marte Siebenhar of the Bakehouse Art Complex.

Siebenhar sees the Mad Chiller collaboration as a way to leverage their assets of 3.2 acre space and their 220 volt capability, which “is the amount of power required to run their machines,” she says.

Williams and Siebenhar have similar goals for their organizations, which made it the perfect pairing. Both agree that you have to know what your goals and assets are and getting feedback from your audience is crucial. “Having feedback from our customers helps us move forward and that helps Mad Chiller stay within the fabric of the community,” Williams says.

Understanding your audience is also key and like Chiller’s customers, Siebenhar regularly asks for feedback from her board and the public. That helps with one of the most important aspects to her, which is to “change your approach if you want a different result and be truly flexible.”

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