In the Loop
Alumni News : Aug 8, 2018

Music industry professional shares reflection as a Gator

By Alia Salem (BS English ’20) & Samantha Brown (BSPR '18)

Marsha Costa (BA Music ‘65) recently visited UF for the School of Music’s 90th anniversary concert in February. While here, she reconnected with her musical roots and reflected on how her experiences at UF influenced her future endeavors in multiple musical careers.

“I knew I wanted to be in an education of sorts, and I said ‘why not music education,’ so that’s how I ended up in the music program,” Costa said.  “I really hadn’t had any formal voice lessons until I got to UF and had them with Guy Webb. He got me involved with Women’s Glee Club, and I became a soloist.”

Costa soon became involved in multiple programs, expressing how she grew up with a father that expected perfection, and perfection meant being the best in almost everything. This childhood taught her unwavering motivation and serious multitasking skills.

“One of the things about trying to be the best is that you get involved with as many things as you possibly can,” Costa said.  “And one thing about being a music major is that you need to do so many things—I had voice lessons with Guy Webb, University Choir, Women’s Glee Club, practicing, and the comprehensive courses all at once.”

This rigorous schedule and variety of experiences gave her the confidence and knowledge to take on the music industry without fear. Costa explained how her multiple positions in clubs and events helped her in life without her even initially knowing it.

“I didn’t realize that being tour manager of the University Choir helped me," she said." I put that behind me when I started working. But, when I look back, I realize how much it actually did helped me. I think any leadership positions in your younger days benefit you in the future.”

Costa took advantage of her leadership talents in all her jobs, easily climbing the career ladder. She worked at multiple music companies, including Music Vision and Warner Chapel Music, always starting off underestimated and ending in a position of power.

“Life presents different challenges and opportunities,” Costa said.  “Women were not treated as well back then. Nearly every position I started, I started as the assistant or secretary. But I always worked my way up.”