‘Why we joined the union’

Volume 119, No. 8September, 2019

Manly Romero

I rejoined Local 802 after I accepted the position of head librarian at the New York Pops. I’m also the Manhattan School of Music’s performance librarian, a job I’ve held for 12 years. This comes after a summer as head librarian at Aspen, and it feels a bit like I’m riding a wave of interesting opportunities right now. (I’m also the personal librarian for Steven Reineke and Jane Monheit.) I recently worked the premiere of a new Disney film with an orchestra show. It was great working with Disney and taking in the audience reaction. My degrees are in composition, and I’ve worked as a pen-and-ink copyist, computer engraver, editor, published orchestrator and librarian for my entire adult life. It may sound cheesy, but music is an intrinsic part of my identity and has been for as long as I can remember. I love not only the feeling of being immersed in sound, but also the mediation between concept and execution that the language of music notation embodies, and all the logistics and teamwork that go on behind the scenes of a great performance. — Manly Romero,