Each tour of the Glenn Miller Orchestra is an artistic and logistic feat: every year up to 130 concerts take the ensemble from Western Europe via Eastern Europe to Israel and Siberia.
INFECTIOUS SOUND PLUS HARD WORK
When in the evening the complete big band is on stage in their tuxedos, relying on their own technical system especially installed for this performance, they are ready to sweep away the audience in two hours of musical fireworks. What seems so easy and infectious is based on hard work. The management prepares every detail of each and every concert. The protagonist here – alongside the head of the orchestra Wil Salden – is concert manager Jutta Schmidt. She is supported by a team of six colleagues.
PERFECTION IN SOUND AND MANAGEMENT
Whenever the Glenn Miller Orchestra performs live, the manager Jutta Schmidt has meticulously prepared the event and has everything perfectly under control. This is particularly important, because different types of concert require very different things from the band and its manager. On the one hand there are the fixed bookings when concert promoters, concert hall maintainers or companies book the Glenn Miller Orchestra for a concert or a gala. On the other hand the management of the Glenn Miller Orchestra may hire a concert hall and arrange a concert at their own risk.
PRECISE TO THE SMALLEST DETAIL
However, the management does not simply book concert halls for the tour, it also arranges the entire trip, including transportation and accommodation. The tight schedule Wil Salden and his group are on, requires the identification and booking of suitable means of transportation – coach, train or plane – and planning for adequate recovery time. After all the audience expects to see an orchestra on stage that is fresh and relaxed and performs to the usual perfection. Audio and video productions represent another field. Numerous radio stations stopped playing the originals from the 30s and 40s years ago; they have been replaced by cover versions by well-known big bands. They use recordings by Wil Salden, because they are closest to the original, while offering the artistic quality and technical standard expected of a top orchestra today.
Tour manager Huub Salden, Wil Salden’s brother, is present at all concerts. He ensures that everything works on location. Dirk Oliestelder or Frank Pachen, the tonmeisters, are responsible for the “bon ton”.