Christina Savinell: Finding Balance

Christina Savinell’s job is so sweet even the distractions are better than most people’s. When she has a break, instead of hanging out at the water cooler or logging into Facebook, she can stroll into Heinz Hall to hear the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra rehearsing.  That’s because since fall of 2010, Savinell has been the Multimedia Manager with Pittsburgh’s world-renowned ensemble.

A double degree student in music and information science during her time at Pitt, Savinell’s job gives her the opportunity to combine the two fields, and her studies paved the way for her to excel in both. When asked how her musical background is a resource to her, Savinell explains that

“…There would be a lot more questions and there’s a certain language you use when you’re typing out programs or talking about music, and that’s good to know as well.”

One of Savinell’s most visible responsibilities includes creating video for the PSO’s Web site. She manages all of the technical setup as well as editing, and even creating the voiceovers, all within a four-hour turnaround. You can see some her work on the Orchestra’s vimeo page.

The balance that Savinell enjoys between musical and technical interests was just as important to her as a student as it is now.

“In college it really kept me sane because when I had both of the classes it was a good balance of left and right brain. And I’d come over to the music department and be creative and could work endlessly on things, and then I would go over to the Information Science Building I would have these set classes in how to think and how to program and it has to be done one way. So I think it was a really great combination for the five years that I was here.”

The work of keeping the PSO’s Web site chugging along hasn’t kept Savinell from continuing her performing activities though. She plays the piano for United Presbyterian Church of Universal (in Penn Hills) and performs on stage with Stage 62, a theater group based in Carnegie, Pennsylvania.

When asked about her advice to current students Savinell stresses pursuing your real interests. “Be a double major and do what you like and you’ll find a job for it.”