What We Learned from Virtual TLCC 2021

This month, Adage had the immense pleasure to participate in another Tessitura Learning & Community Conference. Like last year, TLCC 2021 was fully virtual, gathering more than 4,000 people from North America, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand online for learning sessions, open space conversations, and social events. While it’s obviously disappointing to not be able to gather in person, Tessitura really hit a virtual conference homerun. I promise that’s the one and only sports reference I’ll make in this blog post about a conference full of arts, culture, and entertainment attendees!

It’s impossible to condense everything the Adage Team experienced and learned at TLCC down to a brief summary, but I would like to highlight three themes of the week.

  • Product Trends
  • Industry Trends
  • Community

Product Trends

TLCC included multiple sessions throughout the week to introduce or reacquaint community members with their products and services through demos. The highlights and most popular sessions seemed to be a discussion of Tessitura Payments and Version 16 Memberships, both of which are coming soon on the roadmap. It was most valuable for our Adage team to attend these sessions and learn about the upcoming features so we can support them on our clients’ websites.

Tessitura Payments will partner with provider Adyen to provide a new modern payment solution. The solution, which should substantially reduce PCI footprint, will be released as an update to Tessitura 15.1 and 16.0 and eventually be included as a part of TNEW. Currently, Tessitura v16 is on track for Beta in Q4 of this year, and they’re seeking organizations for testing. With this timeline, users can expect to be enjoying the benefits of the new v16 by mid-2022!

Many members and partners shared their success stories with Tessitura products throughout the week. Adage had the opportunity to present with our client, Strathmore, on their transition to a hybrid e-commerce site using TN Express Web. Senior Developer, Sam Hauck joined the conversation with Strathmore’s Madeline Shelton.

Industry Trends

Throughout the week, industry trends and common themes emerged in the presentations, open space discussions, and community meet-ups. Many members discussed the ongoing uncertainty of the pandemic and its effects on arts and culture organizations. There were over 100 open space sessions with various topics ranging from engaging the next generation to best practices for analytics. A handful of sessions focused on COVID-related issues such as enforcing vaccine policies and structuring a hybrid work environment.

Donations were also a hot topic for TLCC 2021: how to get donations quickly, the conflicting desire of wanting to gather as much donor information as possible, and automatic billing for recurring donations.

A second presentation with Adage participants was Making the Move: Timing, Budget, And Solution Considerations When Updating Your E-Commerce, with our CEO, Roy Chomko, and VP of Strategic Growth, Sarah Bordson. The session covered the benefits and criteria for selecting an out-of-box, vs hybrid, vs custom e-commerce solution. Though the conversation centered around e-commerce, viewers also asked valuable questions about topics such as a timeline for a full website rebuild, selecting a CMS, and getting leadership buy-in.

CEO Roy Chomko and VP of Strategic Growth, Sarah Bordson presented Making the Move: Timing, Budget, and Solution Considerations When Updating Your E-Commerce.

Participating in a Tessitura event always helps to re-center us around what people in the community are most concerned about for the future and to consider how Adage can help. This was primarily evident in Open Spaces sessions where the Tessitura users were able to share their concerns and potential solutions. The quantity and variety of Open Space discussions show just how diverse and supportive this community is. The ability to share and bounce ideas of our industry colleagues is part of what makes the Tessitura community so invaluable.


Though last year’s virtual TLCC was incredibly well-done (especially considering how much Tessitura had to pivot to create it), virtual TLCC 2021 really injected so much fun into the conference. The use of the Swap Card online event platform made it easy to navigate and allowed for concurrent sessions and incredible “intermission” programming to fill in the gaps. During the session breaks, attendees got to learn how to sketch with the National Gallery of Victoria, hear about Suehyla El-Attar’s one-woman show at Horizon Theatre in Atlanta, explore the Monterey Bay Aquarium, stretch with the English National Ballet, and hear the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Opportunities for networking and socializing abounded with the community meetups, speed networking, and virtual game show, escape room, and lazy river!

We Can’t Wait for Next Year

TLCC is always a remarkable experience. Whether you’re a first-time attendee or a Tessitura veteran, this conference really is one of a kind. This year’s event kicked the virtual conference experience up a notch, in a creative way only our art & culture friends could. We all hope to meet in person again next year!

TLCC 2022 is scheduled to be in Denver, Colorado.

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