Episode: Programs with Impact: Let's Go Digital, with Ryan Guth

Choir Ninja, with Ryan Guth Logo
Programs with Impact: Let's Go Digital, with Ryan Guth

You probably never studied graphic design, but your audience still deserves a concert program that doesn’t look like a church bulletin from 1998. If the economic and ecologic costs of paper programs have you concerned, Ryan is here to teach you how to go digital. He will lay out the advantages of digital programs, address some of the disadvantages, and walk you through the process of creating them step by step. Listen [Subscribe on iTunes] [Subscribe on Android] Highlight to Tweet:         “Before you get up in arms about devices at your concert, let’s weigh the options.” - Ryan Guth Show Notes:

  • Physical paper programs (traditional)
    • It is the piece of your concert your audience takes home with them
    • Use canva.com for design assistance to make your programs beautiful and professional looking
  • Physical programs (non-traditional)
    • Incorporate something that represents your theme
    • Creates a distinctive keepsake
    • Think creatively - printing on items like balloons or fans may be cheaper than a glossy traditional paper program
  • Digital or virtual programs - viewed on your personal digital device
    • Advantages
      • Save paper
      • Save money
      • Save space in the landfill
      • Can be viewed in full color
      • Zoom feature important for visually impaired
      • Content is “clickable” -
        • great for promoting your social media channels
        • or your GoFundMe page
        • or a link to the site for parents to pay for the choir trip
        • link to a virtual ad to businesses that want to support you
        • survey
        • email list subscription
        • concert evaluation
    • Disadvantages
      • Being on their devices could be a distraction during the concert
      • Encourage your audience to keep phone muted and the screen dimmed
    • Access
      • Digital programs are accessed through a url (not a QR code. Come on, man.)
      • Tinyurl.com
      • Create program on Canva.com; add your active links; download as a pdf; upload to google drive; find the “view” url; make a custom “slug” at tinyurl.com
      • Project the program url on the wall
Bio: Having spent most of his middle and high school career in detention, Ryan Guth loves to speak to audiences about ways for choral directors to engage the seemingly un-engageable. Ryan learned fearlessness and indomitable spirit from a young age through many years studying the martial arts while also pursuing music – especially the time in middle school when he tried to break a board with his head in front his entire ninth grade class and failed spectacularly. He believes the best choir directors face challenges head-on (no pun intended), are solutions-oriented, and take full responsibility forall aspects of their program.  Ryan’s most popular and surprisingly positive article “Your Choir Sucks Because You Suck” was shared over 2,200 times in 48 hours, and has since become his manifesto, mantra, and the platform that his work was built upon. Through his first podcast, Find Your Forte, Ryan connected thousands of weekly listeners with some of the most brilliant minds in choral music such as Helmuth Rilling, Patrick Quigley, Joseph Flummerfelt, James Bass, and 80-plus others. He recognizes the fact we become the best when we learn from the best. Ryan Guth recently created the Choir Ninja podcast to share solutions with middle and high school choral directors so they learn to work smarter – not harder. That’s why he focuses on sharing what works in choral programs across Choir Nation in a way that makes running a great choral program approachable, fun, and rewarding. When not dressing up in his ninja jammies or buffing his diploma from Westminster Choir College, Ryan is a financial advisor in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Before that, he spent a decade building a large middle school program and six-figure-choral-ensemble-based-for-profit-business in central New Jersey. He is also the founder and sole member of the Hyphenation Club of America. Ryan enjoys getting lost outdoors with his beautiful fiancé, Amanda, and pitbull-lab Sasha. He also dislikes socks and only wears them when absolutely necessary. This bio was sponsored by Gold Bond Powder. Resources/links Mentioned: Sponsored by: Sight Reading Factory (Use promo code “NINJA” at checkout for 10 free student accounts!) My Music Folders (Use promo code “NINJA” at checkout for “last column” or best pricing - usually reserved for bulk purchases only!)

Choir Ninja, with Ryan Guth
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