Buy my book

More Reviews

✰✰✰✰✰ What’s Next? should be Required Reading for Educators and Administrators. What’s Next? is an engrossing read about what is happening in today’s world of standardized tests and the lack of arts programs in the schools. Karlin makes a strong case as to why it is essential to include the arts in all educational programs. It is an important book for our time.  Amazon customer

✰✰✰✰✰ An important book to read for people involved with non-profit organizations, especially the arts. What’s Next? delves into the challenges of creativity in today’s world of instant entertainment. Jan Karlinoffers solutions to the problems of arts and music funding (both under funding and misdirected funding), public arts education and so much more. The author has formidable experience in the world of performance arts (music and theatre) and has the credibility to critique and analyze the issues in today’s societal focus on mass appeal. I found the book to be very helpful for insight into the workings of any non-profit, regardless of the focus on art, music, dance, or other areas. Jan Karlin knows how to build a successful organization and is a keen administrator, executive director, fund-raiser, networker, and multi-tasker: all skills necessary to establish and survive in an environment that is no longer providing adequate public education or support. Sally K. – Amazon

Your book already clicks with many thoughts in my mind, just that you articulate it much more thoughtfully in a more holistic way! Charles Kwong, composer

Jan Karlin’s new book, “What’s Next? Creativity in the Age of Entertainment” is a welcome addition to the voices advocating for more and better arts education in the US as a way to stimulate creativity. The book makes a compelling case for a rapidly eroding cultural scene in the US.Two main issues are highlighted as the culprits in our current state of creative stagnation: 1) we’re smack in the middle of a glut of readily available online entertainment, which distracts us from seeking out the not-so-readily-available kinds (concerts, art museums, reading, etc.), and 2) our American education system has failed to recognize the importance of the arts in helping students find creative solutions to problems that face them. By focusing on teaching to the test and slowly eradicating the arts from their curriculum, many schools are having a deleterious effect on how our children problem solve. 

There are other issues as well, such as the major apportionment of charitable dollars going to the big, glamorous institutions (think Metropolitan Opera), and in some cases their big, glamorous homes. And the current urge to make a fast buck on art instead of putting its careful creation borne of a love of the subject matter first is evident in many organizations today. 

Fortunately, it’s not all bad news! We may squander our creative capital, but there seems to be a growing number of individuals and institutions that are sounding the alarm and calling for change: change in our school systems, change in our funding priorities, and change in our leadership. Ms. Karlin makes it clear that there’s plenty of room for growth, but she is also upbeat that this is achievable, and gives many examples of how this has worked in communities across America.

There is also a compilation of resources at the end of the book called Creative Connections, which is very useful in terms of online research to further the reader’s comprehension of the issues at hand and creativity in general.   Pam Foard, violinist

This book usefully outlines the crisis we are facing . . . she makes it clear what the problems are—and what is not being done to deal with them. American Record Guide

Karlin shares her experiences with creative people and artistic projects, demonstrating how inspiration and imagination coexist across various disciplines. Karlin explores the current Age of Entertainment; explains how the roles of imitation, discipline, and cleverness nurture creativity skills; shares innovative ideas that led to Grammy Awards and international projects; and illustrates her views about the future of arts education and the music business through successful programs around the country. Finally, she offers suggestions for creativity development in the arts, business, education, and in personal lives. Teaching Music

This is a must read book for everyone involved in the arts: artists, board members, donors/audience members, staff, press, and students.  Jan inspires each of us to keep striving for “A-ha” moments in our work to inspire ourselves and society at large through the arts. Jeffrey P. Haydon, CEO at Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts and former executive director of the Ojai Festival