Honoring Cathy Payne
Submitted by the ICSOM Governing Board
Whereas, Cathy Payne has been a dedicated and enthusiastic member of the San Francisco Symphony since 1996; and
Whereas, She first represented her orchestra as ICSOM Delegate in 1998; and
Whereas, Cathy proved to be an active and passionate representative for all ICSOM orchestras when she was elected as Member-at-Large in 2007; and
Whereas, As one of this country’s prominent musicians, Cathy has been an influential voice within ICSOM and has been a vocal advocate on behalf of orchestras, and especially orchestras under fire; and
Whereas, After six years on the Governing Board, Cathy has chosen to step down; therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Delegates and Officers to the 2013 ICSOM Conference offer profound gratitude for her passion and advocacy and extend their best wishes in all her future endeavors.
Ongoing Support for Minnesota Orchestra Musicians
Submitted by the ICSOM Governing Board, Norbert Nielubowski (Minnesota) and Leslie Shank (Saint Paul)
Whereas, Orchestras have been under attack and those attacks escalated during the 2012-2013 season in such a manner as to cause avoidable labor disputes including multi-week lock-outs in Atlanta and Indianapolis that resulted in massive cutbacks, a 191-day lockout of the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, and a continuing lockout, now in its eleventh month, of the Minnesota Orchestra; and
Whereas, The incomprehensible behavior by boards and managers of these prominent orchestras has demonstrated how badly they have betrayed their communities as trustees of their great public institutions; and
Whereas, These boards have abandoned their charge to support the highest forms of symphonic music for a “business model” designed to destroy their orchestras and the good works they do in their communities by reducing costs without regard to consequences; and
Whereas, ICSOM orchestras, along with ROPA, OCSM and RMA members have demonstrated resolute support for all orchestras in jeopardy, and especially for the musicians of the Minnesota Orchestra during its ongoing lockout, as demonstrated by more than $300,000 in contributions stemming from ICSOM’s Call to Action and donations of salaries and concert proceeds from benefit concerts and from a performance for the recent League of American Orchestras by some of ICSOM’s prominent orchestras; and
Whereas, At the recent 99th Convention of the American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada, Local AFM officers, Player Conference and Local Conference representatives, AFM officers and staff, and AFM Convention attendees displayed their own form of united support for the Twin Cities Musicians Union, Local 30-73 AFM, which supports and represents musicians from both the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and the Minnesota Orchestra, when in two hours their contributions to Local 30-73 exceeded $70,000; therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Delegates and Officers to the 2013 ICSOM Conference condemn the conduct of those boards and managers who seek to dismantle and destroy our orchestras, and especially the Minnesota Orchestra; and, be it further
Resolved, That these same Delegates and Officers stand united and offer their ongoing and unwavering support for the Musicians of the Minnesota Orchestra as they continue their fight to retain the highest level of performance and artistry.
Gratitude for Support of Orchestra Musicians in Labor Disputes
Submitted by the ICSOM Governing Board
Whereas, When an orchestra finds itself locked out or on strike, the musicians continue to perform to keep the music alive; and
Whereas, At times we find it necessary to call upon our friends within the musical community to assist us in that mission; and
Whereas, Many of our greatest artists and conductors deserve our thanks for supporting the Atlanta Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and Minnesota Orchestra during their lockouts this past season, in particular conductors Michael Palmer (Atlanta), Raymond Leppard (Indianapolis), Hugh Wolff (Saint Paul), Sir Neville Marriner (Minnesota), Stanislaw Skrowaczewski (Minnesota), Edo de Waart (Minnesota) and Osmo Vänskä (Minnesota); conductor and violinist Pinchas Zuckerman (Saint Paul); and pianist Andre Watts (Indianapolis); and
Whereas, We are also indebted to Bernadette Peters and Bobby McFerrin for their support of the San Francisco Symphony strike when they agreed to postpone their performances rather than cross the musicians’ picket line; and
Whereas, It is important to acknowledge the generosity and support of these individuals nationally as well as locally; therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Delegates and Officers to the 2013 ICSOM Conference offer their heartfelt thanks and gratitude to these wonderfully gifted conductors and musicians who offered their support in a time of need, and who, along with ICSOM’s orchestras, bring the world’s greatest repertoire to life within our communities.
Support of AFM Convention Substitute Resolution Related to AFM-EPF
Submitted by the ICSOM Governing Board
Whereas, The American Federation of Musicians and Employers Pension Fund (AFM-EPF) is the sole or primary pension fund for the majority of ICSOM orchestras, as well as ROPA orchestras, Broadway and recording musicians and freelancers; and
Whereas, Since the steps taken by the AFM-EPF to address the effects of the 2008 economic crash there is concern that symphonic employers may consider withdrawal from the Fund; and
Whereas, Some employers attempt to convince musicians to agree to withdraw from the Fund without all the pertinent facts; and
Whereas, The AFM, in partnership with the AFM-EPF, is dedicated to educating and assisting negotiating orchestras and their Locals; and
Whereas, At the recent 99th AFM Convention a substitute recommendation supported by both the AFM International Executive Board and the leadership of ICSOM was adopted by the Convention; therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Delegates to the 2013 ICSOM Conference support the substitute Recommendation below and agree to work with their Locals to assure all negotiation committees are informed of this process.
In the event that an employer requests a withdrawal liability estimate or engages in discussion of bankruptcy and/or withdrawal from the AFM EPF or MPF-Canada, or a proposal is made that would result in a reduction of the effective percentage contribution rate, the Local Union and negotiating committee shall promptly notify the President’s Office. The Local Union and negotiating committee will engage in educational session(s) with the International President’s Office, or Vice President from Canada’s Office, as appropriate, in order to supply the Local Union and negotiating committee with pertinent information regarding the AFM-EPF or MPF Canada.
Thereafter, the parties shall agree to appropriate steps which may include, but are not be limited to,
- Federation and Pension Fund representatives meeting with the negotiating Committee;
- Federation and Pension Fund representatives meeting with the orchestra,
- Federation and Pension Fund representatives attending bargaining sessions designated for discussion of pension withdrawal, bankruptcy proceedings, or reduction of the effective percentage contribution rate.
This Section 37(b) shall not be applied to deprive, or otherwise interfere with, Locals’ rights and responsibilities with respect to the negotiation and ratification of any CBA.
Honoring Shirley Helzberg
Submitted by Marvin Gruenbaum and Brian Rood (Kansas City) and the ICSOM Governing Board
Whereas, Mrs. Barnett C. (Shirley) Helzberg recently stepped down as Chairperson of the Kansas City Symphony (KCS) Board of Trustees after 18 years (1995-2013) of exemplary service; and
Whereas, Shirley has consistently demonstrated a passionate and unwavering commitment to the KCS and to the cultural life of Kansas City; and
Whereas, Under Shirley’s leadership the KCS ushered in an era of tremendous artistic and fiscal growth as well as cooperative governance and musician empowerment; and
Whereas, The KCS has experienced wide critical and public acclaim for the artistic growth of the KCS through live performances and on recordings including a PBS nationally broadcast documentary and two Grammy award nominations including one award; and
Whereas, Shirley was instrumental in fostering a culture of mutual concern and respect by and between the Musicians, the Board and the Staff and approached all issues in a spirit of openness, cooperation and fairness; and
Whereas, Since 1900 only four other individuals are believed to have led the board of an American orchestra longer than Shirley; and
Whereas, Shirley and her husband Barnett exhibited extraordinary generosity and kindness, not only in her work and contributions on behalf of the KCS but in her concern for the welfare of the Musicians and their families as in, for example, the facts that they established Section 529 accounts for the dependents of KCS Musicians and made generous annual contributions to these accounts; and
Whereas, Shirley continues to serve on multiple boards of not-for-profit organizations across Kansas City and the country; therefore, be it
Resolved, That the delegates of the 2013 ICSOM Conference express their utmost appreciation and admiration to Mrs. Barnett C. (Shirley) Helzberg for her exemplary leadership of a symphony orchestra and for her extraordinary tenure as Chairperson of the Kansas City Symphony Board of Trustees.
Young Musicians of Minnesota
Submitted by Norbert Nielubowski and Paul Gunther (Minnesota), Leslie Shank (Saint Paul) and the ICSOM Governing Board
Whereas, Members of ICSOM Orchestras inspire many thousands of music students throughout the U.S.A.; and
Whereas, Many of these music students become dedicated and serious young musicians; and
Whereas, Music students and young musicians represent the future of our profession, both as performers and supporters; and
Whereas, The well-being of an orchestra directly affects the ability of its musicians to inspire students; and
Whereas, Extended lockouts have caused the loss of members of the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and Minnesota Orchestras from the Twin Cities, because the musicians have been forced to go far afield in search of work, and even to relocate permanently; and
Whereas, These losses increasingly disrupt or destroy connections between professional musicians and their students; and
Whereas, In order to stem the losses of their teachers and role models, and to encourage the resolution of these labor disputes in the Twin Cities, a group of concerned music students and young musicians has come together and established a new organization called the Young Musicians of Minnesota (http://www.youngmusiciansofmn.org/); and
Whereas, Through the use of public concerts and social media, the Young Musicians of Minnesota have worked tirelessly to keep the ongoing Minnesota Orchestra lockout in the public eye; therefore, be it
Resolved, That, in order to encourage the Young Musicians of Minnesota in their ongoing efforts to support their professional mentors and to bring about a healthy future for the ICSOM orchestra musicians who inspire them, the Delegates and Officers to the 2013 ICSOM Conference recognize the contribution of the Young Musicians of Minnesota, and congratulate them on their accomplishments.
Urging Appointment of Chairperson of and Funding for the NEA
Submitted by the ICSOM Governing Board
Whereas, The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) was established by an act of Congress in 1965; and
Whereas, One of the first projects undertaken by the International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians (ICSOM) was to take an active role in the establishment of the NEA through letter-writing campaigns and testifying before Congress; and
Whereas, The NEA is dedicated to supporting excellence in the arts, both new and established by bringing the arts to all Americans, and providing leadership in arts education; and
Whereas, The NEA has withstood numerous attempts to abolish and defund the institution over many years, and is once again under attack by some members of Congress who fail to see the value of the Arts to our nation and the next generation of Americans; and
Whereas, When Congress returns to Washington this fall, a proposal from the House Appropriations Committee to enact the largest cut in the NEA’s history awaits; and
Whereas, The non-profit arts and culture industry results in over $135 billion in economic activity annually, while leading to jobs for over four million Americans; and
Whereas, The valuable role of the arts in education is undisputed; and
Whereas, The NEA has been without a Chairperson for over eight months; therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Delegates and Officers to the 2013 ICSOM Conference call upon President Obama to immediately appoint a charismatic and effective new Chairperson for the NEA; and, be it further
Resolved, That the members of ICSOM call upon President Obama, and all of our nation’s leaders, to increase advocacy for increased funding for the NEA and to make public statements in support of the role of the arts in our society.