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One Woman in a HundredEdna Phillips and the Philadelphia Orchestra$
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Mary Sue Welsh

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780252037368

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252037368.001.0001

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One Step Ahead of the Sheriff

One Step Ahead of the Sheriff

(p.58) Chapter 5 One Step Ahead of the Sheriff
One Woman in a Hundred

Mary Sue Welsh

University of Illinois Press

This chapter details Edna Phillips' first concert season. On the Friday afternoon of her first concert, Phillips had no choice but to “head down the track without looking left or right, like a racehorse with blinders on.” There was nothing to do but steel herself and go forward. Much to her surprise, she made it through the concert without any gaffes. She didn't come in at a wrong place or get lost or lose count or commit any of the terrible errors she feared she might. While it is never easy for a newcomer in an organization to learn the routine under which it operates, for Phillips it was especially difficult. She did not have the luxury of serving under a first-chair player who might tell her how this or that was done or having any natural allies to mentor her. She had to learn most of the ins and outs of being a Philadelphia Orchestra member on her own.

Keywords:   Philadelphia Orchestra, Edna Phillips, female musicians, harpists, concert season

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