“Marketing is key in the music industry, and I am grateful for the class projects that enabled me to take information learned within the classroom and apply it to real-world situations and organizations.”
When you see Andrea Warner ’10 perform on stage as part of her country music duo Aly’An, it’s hard to imagine her sitting calmly in a classroom discussing the tactics of a successful marketing campaign. Her musical act is a high energy, hard-driving combustion of strong vocals and rocking guitar licks. Members of the audience feel compelled to get on their feet and move with the rhythms of the music.
But Warner fully understands that her success in the highly competitive country music business is not just because of the talent and ambition of the duo’s two stars: Warner and her long-time friend Alyson Burke. Although both began performing widely as young girls—often competing against each other at local competitions and jamborees—they were nonetheless committed to completing their college educations before launching their music careers. And it appears their clear-sighted plan is paying off.
“The music industry is not only about being on stage, but also includes the behind-the-scenes work of running your own business,” explains Warner. “Everything from employee administration and planning to financial management and forecasting is required. I credit the Transylvania business program and professor Julia Poynter's Business Policy course for preparing me to take on those challenges.”
Aly’An has enjoyed remarkable success. The duo released an original album in 2011, participated in a national radio tour promoting the single "Going Home," signed with an international management company, and shared the stage with some of country music’s hottest entertainers, including Thompson Square, Heidi Newfield, Marty Stuart, Ashton Shepherd, Confederate Railroad, Bucky Covington, Florida-Georgia Line, and Trent Tomlinson. In 2012 the duo was selected to perform at the Vice-Presidential Debate in Danville, Ky.
Warner came to Transylvania to play basketball and enjoy the small classes and one-on-one attention from the professors. She found that the broad-based education she received has helped her understand “people and our motivations.”
“Professor Poynter’s hands-on style of teaching prepared me for situations I have encountered since I left Transylvania. She offered encouragement and was a mentor to me as a student.
“To this day I still receive active support from my college professors at Transylvania, and I am grateful for the relationships I was able to develop.”