Successful Berklee Alumni #57: Cambria Russell-Herrera

Cambria Russell-Herrera

(formerly Russell)

cambria russell-herrera


Listen to the interview (approx. 1 hr, 14 min.) or download it.


Graduated in 2015 with a major in Music Business.  Principal Instrument:  harp.


Position: Studio Manager of Cherry Lion Studios in Atlanta Georgia, which produces sculpture, both commissioned work and mass-produced pieces for the hospitality industry.  Cambria manages the business/financial end of the studio, which has a lead sculptor, an assistant sculptor, and another worker.
Overview:  After graduating in the spring of 2015, Cambria moved to New York City for a promised job in the music industry…which fell through after she moved in to an expensive neighborhood!  Wanting to stay in the city and work in entertainment law, she quickly found a job with the New York Film Academy working on music licensing for films, but it paid considerably less and she didn’t like the specific work.  After four months, she elected to move to Altanta to be with her now-husband.  Aware that she needed a job ASAP, Cambria broadened her job search to opportunities outside music, and was hired as a part-time manager for Cherry Line Studios at modest pay.

It became clear that the job was far more work than estimated and Cambria’s hours went to effectively full-time, though her pay remained modest.  8 months later, thanks to Cambria’s help, the studio was on a much more solid fiscal footing, and her boss was extremely impressed and grateful for all she had done.  At that point, she and her boss had a conversation which resulted in Cambria becoming a full-time employee and her pay was greatly increased to reflect all she was doing.


You can see Cambria’s LinkedIn profile here.


Choice Quotes:  “One thing I love about the job is that every day is different–there’s a brand new problem I have to solve.”

“To be honest, I’m underqualified–My boss really needs someone with an MBA and ten years experience, but he can’t afford that.  Thus I was OK with the initial low pay rate because I was gaining incredible, relevant work experience.”

“I’m using a lot of the knowledge & skills I learned at school for my job.” Berklee Music Business Professor Andrea Johnson gave us a (music) studio management Excel template which I’m using now at work!  It helps me get a much better picture of what our profit is with each commission.  Also, I negotiate with my boss, with the clients. with independent contractors we hire, and others–and Berklee’s contract negotiation aspect of Music Business has helped me SO MUCH!  It gave me a real skill of understanding art & music as property”

“After dedicating 4 years to something specific like music it’s not easy to let go of the specificity, but doing something unrelated for work might prove to be fun and good for you.”

“The art world doesn’t have the business intermediaries down like music does, and it’s much less standardized in terms of value than the music industry.  My Berklee edcuation gives me a much better idea on assessing what things should be worth in a way that nobody else (in the art world) really knows and helps me make others understand that too.”


See the full index of Successful Berklee Grads.