Cleveland native Emily Guthrie, a senior studying the entertainment industry and music business, is one of the Belmont students going on tour for 2 1/2 weeks and a grade.
The tour’s “classroom” and schedule looks something like this: one tour bus, a precious few hotel rooms, long hours and many stages.
Under the guidance of faculty adviser Mark Volman and staff advisoer Lucas Boto, students will work with touring artists and crew professionals in the areas of tour management, stage management, audio engineering, tour accounting and merchandise sales.
These duties will be in addition to their continued learning each day during the process of load-in, setup, tear-down and load-out. These hands-on educational avenues outside of the classroom provide networking opportunities with all of the supporting organizations while gaining an understanding of the revenue flow from music consumer to touring performer.
Guthrie, 21, said, “I love the process of putting together live events, but I've never worked on a tour. I'm looking forward to learning about the realities of touring and meeting interesting people along the way.”
“Only at Belmont do students get such a unique opportunity to experience the world of tour management, live production, and what life on the road looks like before embarking on their career paths. I’m excited to teach them what I know outside a normal classroom space and to see what I’ll learn from them. Inevitably, their energy will add to the tour experience for the performers as well,” says Turtles founding member and Curb College professor of entertainment industry studies Volman.
The “Happy Together Tour” unites several pop/rock artists of the ’60s all together on on stage, starring: The Turtles featuring Flo and Eddie; The Monkees lead singer Micky Dolenz; Gary Puckett and The Union Gap; The Grass Roots; and The Buckinghams.
Students will work a dozen shows on the tour, including Columbus, Ga.; Dothan, Ala.; the Riverbend Festival in Chattanooga (tonight); Florida Theatre, Jacksonville, Fla. (June 14); Ruth Eckerd Hall, Clearwater, Fla., (June 15); Anderson Music Hall Hiawasee, Ga., (June 16); Montgomery Performing Arts Centre Montgomery, Ala., (June 17); Keswick Theatre Glenside, Pa. (June 19); New Jersey State Theatre New Brunswick, N.J. (June 20); The Tarrytown Music Hall Tarrytown, N.Y., (June 21); NYCB Theatre at Westbury, Westbury, N.Y. (June 23); and NH Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom Hampton Beach, N.H. (June 24).
The touring classroom joins a long line of experiential learning opportunities offered to students in Belmont’s Curb College of Music Business and Entertainment. In addition to an ongoing annual showcase series that features student production and performances, the Curb College sent 15 students in March to class at SXSW (also known as “South by Southwest”), the world’s leading music industry event, to allow them to network with leading executives, learn about industry trends and discover emerging artists. The University also hosted the Pipeline project last summer, a student think tank dedicated to entertainment industry solutions.