A well-hidden, but extremely essential part of any music school is the ensemble library and the person who runs it. Think about it. Who is responsible for getting the right pieces of music to the right people for the right rehearsal in any large ensemble? It’s the quiet, hard-working, seemingly invisible ensemble librarian. At CIM, we are very lucky to have the amazing Janet Winzenburger at the helm of the orchestra library. Her job entails not only the above duties, but consulting with the conductor to make sure the right edition of an orchestral work lands on the player’s stands. She also needs to coordinate with the ensemble manager to make sure there’s enough parts for the amount of players. It’s an intricate web that is woven all behind the scenes.
This career path requires a strong music background. You can’t be responsible for marking up an orchestral size set of parts without knowing how to read music. Look behind any ensemble librarian and you’ll find a solid, well-trained musician like Nishana Gunaratne, the newest member of the US Marine Band‘s library staff. A 2011 CIM grad, Nishana worked both at the reference desk and in the orchestra library during her time as a member of the double bass studio. She got bitten by the library bug and has parlayed her curiosity into a full-fledged career.
Curious about ensemble librarianship? Check out a few new books devoted to the topic.