“Takin’ Care of Business”: A Rock Band Finance Simulation

Suggested Grade Level:  7-12

Students know exactly what music is on their iPods, but they rarely understand that the artistry and glitter of superstardom depends upon a complex business network that must remain financially stable. This class will take students behind the scenes with a real-world simulation that puts them in the shoes of a rock band’s tour manager. In the class activity, students will apply mathematical and financial concepts to help manage a fictional band through a cross-country tour.  This will involve weighing some serious financial concerns about profit and loss: What expenses might they have to budget for? Where will the money come from? How will they respond as managers when ticket sales are lower than expected? Any number of scenarios might affect the tour budget and thus their company’s bottom line.

Related Standards:  Mathematics, Social Studies, Fine Arts-Music


Take a look at the 2013 Plain Dealer article on this class here.

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Director of Curatorial Affairs Howard Kramer talks about the marketing strategy of rock and roll pioneer, Elvis Presley.

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Class Resources

Students will explore the business of music while balancing their budget as a touring band would.

Registering for this Class

Complete this form online using the link below, or download and complete the appropriate registration form (listed below) and fax it back to 216.515.1995. A group sales representative will contact you to confirm a date. If a representative does not contact you within 5 business days, please call the Group Sales Department at 216.515.1228.

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      Students were able to realize the value of setting financial goals and making financial decisions
      - A high school marketing teacher in McMurray, PA
      Well planned program, gave a complete overview of music business with practical applications of basic economic skills
      - A 6th grade Economics teacher in Oak Hill, OH
      "This class was great because it talked about a side of music young people don't know much about, but in a way that kept their attention!"
      - Mark DiDonato, Phoenix School, Cleveland
      My students loved, loved, loved this program! They commented often how much fun it was and enjoyed the decision making about the finances. I would strongly recommend this program to anyone!
      - Darcy Peacock, Montessori School at Holy Rosary