The Orchestra: A Very Short Introduction considers the structure, roots, and day-to-day functioning of the modern philharmonic society and explores topics ranging from the life of a musician in a modern orchestra, the recent wave of new hall construction, threats of bankruptcies and strikes, and the high salaries of conductors and general managers. Can such a seemingly anachronistic organization long survive? Does the symphony matter in contemporary culture? The orchestra remains a potent political and social force. It has adapted well to the digital revolution, and it continues to be seen with civic pride. In a time of upheaval in how classical music is created, heard, distributed, and evaluated, the orchestra has managed to retain its historic role.