SmartMusic Repertoire Development – That’s How They Do That!

This year we added a new element to our company meetings, where we’ll close the meeting by having one department introduce themselves and briefly describe their work. Perhaps because we have so many musicians in the company we’re invited to share this information in any way we wish, and encouraged to express our creativity in the process.

Again, perhaps because we have so many musicians in the company, there is also some pressure to stage a compelling performance.

Our Repertoire Development department’s solution to the challenge was to create a homemade video to introduce its members and demonstrate how a new title is added to the SmartMusic library. The resulting video was a smash success. Despite the fact that it was intended for internal use only, we encouraged them to let us share it with others, and they were kind enough to agree to let us put it on YouTube.

If you haven’t seen it yet, the video is a lot of fun.

Since the video was posted I’ve heard a lot of feedback through our forum and support system, mostly along the lines of “Wow, that’s much more involved than I thought!”

Of course, as in any film, many topics are glossed over. A big part of the repertoire development process is contractual and copyright-based, which doesn’t make for good TV, but it is essential (and time-consuming). Also, there are a few sections in the film where specific details are rattled off so fast that you have to pause the video to grasp even a few of them. This is a light-hearted way to emphasize the meticulous level of detail involved in their work.

Because of all this care and attention, it’s a rare event that a wrong note ever makes it into a SmartMusic piece, there’s a process to address that too, and I thought I’d share this as well. When someone contacts Customer Support with a specific problem, we’ll enter it in an internal tracking system and it gets assigned back to the Repertoire Development department. They’ll check the engraved notation against the score to verify the report and update the files as necessary. Once we’ve done this work, when a customer opens the piece SmartMusic will automatically download the updated file.

Let us know what you think of the video by clicking the “Comments” button below.

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