n Gender and Behaviour - Leadership in Italian major symphony orchestra : analysis of women careers on podium

Volume 7, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1596-9231



With the project 'The Image of Excellence', the research team coordinated by Giorgio Soro described and analyzed how a work group can achieve excellence. The focus was on the interaction between a guest conductor and the hundred or so professional musicians who make up a Major Symphony Orchestra (MSO). From our research data it emerges that on the podium of Italian MSOs women are absent. As the literature indicates, the difficulties that have always surrounded women who choose the conducting professions and can even now be an obstacle to their careers are largely due to the lack of a network of mentors and the violation of gender norms. We scrutinized the biographies of 81 women conductors in order to identify the shared elements which characterize their training and careers. The hypothesis was confirmed, and new items emerged from results: the absence of women from the podium seem to be a lost opportunity, the development of those skills that women have acquired culturally and socially could encourage a phenomenic presence that will lay the foundations for a context that is increasing likely to produce excellence, a goal shared by the artistic organization and the men and women who are involved in it.

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