NEA Funding Update: Subcommittee Speedily Advances Bill to Appropriations Committee

May 25, 2016

On Monday, we alerted you to plans for the House Interior Appropriators subcommittee to begin deliberations for FY17 funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Today, the Subcommittee advanced its recommended bill without amendments at this time, which includes an approximately $2 million increase in funding for the NEA to a level of $149.849 million. This amount equals the President's request.
The next step will be for the larger Appropriations committee to take up the Interior bill for debate, at which time amendments for the various funding priorities within the bill are likely to be offered. We will let you know when this next step is scheduled, so you can voice your support and urge your Representative to do the same. Thank you for your advocacy!

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Special Alert! YOUR U.S. Rep. Begins NEA Funding Process

May 23, 2016

This Wednesday, your member of Congress will be at the table when the House Interior Subcommittee considers a bill that includes the FY17 budget for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).
The total amount of money that the Subcommittee can allocate to various accounts is subject to budget caps, which means all non-defense spending continues to be vulnerable to reductions. Grants awarded to orchestras by the NEA, and support provided to orchestras through NEA funds administered by state arts agencies, provide critical funding for projects that increase access to music in communities nationwide.
Orchestras and the broader arts community are requesting $155 million for the NEA. Please use the League's online Advocacy Center to tell your Representative how vital NEA funding is to your community and to the nation. Your voice matters!

Click Here to Contact Your Representative Today!

Every Student Succeeds Act:
Resources for Orchestras

The passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) marks an important, new opportunity to ensure that every student has access to arts and music education. Now, even more of the decisions about how the arts are supported in education will be made at the state and local levels. The highest poverty schools currently have the least access to music education, denying many students all of the advantages that a complete music education can provide. As civic-minded community-based organizations, America’s adult and youth orchestras work every day - through their programs, partnerships, and policy engagement - to increase access to music education in our nation's schools and communities. Below are links that provide an overview of the new law, public statements to elected officials that urge full funding and support, resources to equip arts advocates at the state and local level, and next steps for orchestras to take action.

League Overviews of ESSA and arts access gaps

Public statements urging support for the arts in ESSA Implementation

Next step: Your orchestra’s advocacy at the state and local levels

The Arts Education Partnership provides a number of helpful resources to support your advocacy activity:

Orchestras can further demonstrate their support for equitable access to music education by signing on to the League’s statement of common cause supporting in-school music education. Drafted with input from more than 50 orchestras, the statement reflects a collective opportunity for all orchestras to take individual, community-specific action to improve access to music education in schools nationwide.

  • League comments to U.S. Department of Education regarding non-regulatory ESSA guidance (5/25/16)

New Overtime Rules Go into Effect on Dec. 1!

May 18, 2016

Today the Obama administration finalized new rules increasing the number of workers eligible to receive overtime compensation.  The new requirements will take effect on December 1, 2016, and will raise the threshold for overtime compensation from $455 a week ($23,660 for a full-year worker) to $913 a week ($47,476 for a full-year worker). In response to questions and concerns raised by the nonprofit community regarding the original draft proposal, the Department of Labor provides nonprofit-specific information, in addition to general resources:

The nonprofit community is rapidly analyzing the final rule. The League is an active member of the National Council of Nonprofits, which provides a very helpful overview: National Council of Nonprofits Analysis

Overtime Explained in Two-Part Free Online Learning Events
Is your orchestra currently in compliance with overtime rules under the Fair Labor Standards Act? And, how will you adapt as the new federal overtime rules go into effect on December 1? The League's partners at Independent Sector are presenting a two-part webinar series free of charge to help nonprofit organizations come up to speed on the current rules and prepare for future changes. Officials from the U.S. Department of Labor will explain the current rules for compliance with overtime requirements in the first webinar, and nonprofit experts will discuss potential plans for how to adapt when the thresholds for those subject to overtime double on December 1, 2016.
Part 1, Current Compliance - Tuesday, May 24, 1:00-2:00pm ET
Part 2, Adapting to New Rules - Tuesday, May 31, 1:00-2:30pm ET
Register Here

FY16 2nd Round NEA Grants Support Student and Community Engagement with Orchestral Experience

May 12, 2016

Orchestras receive 2nd round NEA grants

Schools and communities throughout the nation will engage with orchestral music thanks in part to Art Works support from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The NEA's second round of FY16 Art Works awards includes 51 direct grants to orchestras totaling $1,123,500, as well as numerous grants for related projects. Grantees will collaborate with music educators to encourage participation in school instrumental music programs, provide instruments and music instruction to students in economically distressed communities, offer side-by-side performance opportunities with adult amateurs and youth musicians, live stream concerts, expand online audio archives, commission new works, tour to rural communities, and present discounted or free concerts, festivals, master classes, workshops, and many more programs for people in a variety of circumstances and of different ages and experiences. In addition to providing direct funding, NEA awards, which require a minimum one-to-one match of federal funds, stimulate on average a return of at least nine dollars to one from other state, local, and private sources.

The League submits written testimony to Congress in support of NEA funding every year, provides orchestras with customized tips for applying for an NEA grant, and compiles the project descriptions for grants awarded to orchestras and projects related to the orchestra field. Complete lists of grant amounts and project descriptions for awards in all disciplines may be found on the NEA website in a state-by-state listing or a discipline/field listing. In addition, the NEA maintains an online grant search system which allows members of the public to search all of the NEA's grants since 2000 using a variety of attributes to customize search results.

The next deadline is July 14, 2016 for an FY17 Art Works, Part 2 grant. Orchestras interested in learning more about the process and to discuss their programs are invited to schedule a free one-on-one consultation with the NEA's music specialists at the League's Conference this June. Appointments must be made in advance by contacting the League's This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

View Orchestra Project Descriptions

FY16 Art Works (Part 2)

Grants to Orchestras

Application Deadline of July 23, 2015
Award Announced May 10, 2016

Some details of the projects listed below are subject to change, contingent upon prior Endowment approval.

American Youth Philharmonic Orchestras, $15,000
To support the Chamber Ensemble Program. In partnership with the Ensemble da Camera of Washington, D.C., professional musicians will lead coaching sessions, conduct free public master classes, and present concerts. Chamber ensembles will be formed with students from the orchestra's most advanced youth ensembles. The student ensembles will receive ongoing coaching and master class critiques, as well as perform with the musicians of Ensemble da Camera.

American Youth Symphony, $15,000
To support Vivaldi to Video Games, a concert with related educational activities. The music of video games will be performed along with works in the symphony's standard repertoire. Composers of video game music will be engaged to curate the program, participate in panel discussions, and work with symphony musicians. The performance will take place at Royce Hall on the campus of University of California, Los Angeles.

Anchorage Symphony Orchestra, $15,000
To support Young People's Concerts. In an effort to encourage participation in school instrumental music programs, concerts will be performed for elementary school students. Working in collaboration with Anchorage School District music educators, the orchestra will create study materials for classroom instructors. Teacher workshops also will be offered to prepare students for the concert experience.

Austin Symphony, $30,000
To support Connecting with Music, an interdisciplinary learning initiative for high school students. Focusing on the theme Innovating Music: Exploring Change, the initiative will examine the effect technology has on people's lives. Project plans will include training for teachers and musician teaching artists, in-school workshops by teaching artists, and concerts for high school students. Repertoire may include movements from Beethoven Symphonies, Heitor Villa-Lobos's "Bachianas Brasileiras, No. 2," Alexander Mosolov's "The Iron Foundry," and "Warehouse Medicine" from "The B-Sides: Five Pieces for Orchestra and Electronica" by Mason Bates.

Berkeley Symphony, $15,000
To support the Music in the Schools initiative. Project plans will include classroom visits by musicians, curriculum guides for teachers, school concerts with students rehearsing and performing side by side with orchestra musicians, and family concerts. The orchestra staff will work in collaboration with Berkeley Unified School District music teachers and staff to plan overall themes, select repertoire, and ensure the initiative aligns with state and national educational standards.

Black Pearl Chamber Orchestra, $10,000
To support the Black Pearl @ the Dell. Plans include a summer orchestral residency in Philadelphia's East Fairmount Park at the historic Dell Music Center, an outdoor amphitheater. The concert titled Citywide Side by Side will take place with orchestra musicians performing alongside auditioned adult amateurs and youth musicians under the direction of Music Director Jeri Lynne Johnson. Discounted tickets and transportation will be offered to area youth and senior citizens.

Boston Modern Orchestra Project, $20,000
To support recording and post-production costs for a compact disc of orchestral works by an American composer. The recording will feature works by composer Wayne Peterson and will be released on the orchestra's BMOP/sound record label. Repertoire may include Peterson's "The Face of the Night, The Heart of the Dark," winner of the 1992 Pulitzer Prize in Music.

Britt Festival, $10,000
To support Britt Festival's commissioning and performance project at Crater Lake National Park, an Imagine Your Parks project. The festival's Britt Orchestra will premiere a commissioned work by American composer Michael Gordon, a co-founder of the Bang on a Can ensemble and festival. The site-specific orchestral work, inspired by Crater Lake National Park in southern Oregon, will be performed at the park's Rim Village in free public concerts under the artistic leadership of Music Director and conductor Teddy Abrams. The park-the fifth oldest national park in the United States and the only one in the State of Oregon-encompasses the caldera of Crater Lake, a remnant of a destroyed volcano, Mount Mazama, and the surrounding hills and forest.

Chattanooga Symphony & Opera, $15,000
To support Sound Beginnings, a series of educational programs. Plans include Ensembles in the Schools, which will present professional musicians in elementary and middle schools, a Young People's Concert including a performance by both professional musicians and student groups, and Instrument Introductions for teachers to check-out a variety of orchestral instruments for use in classrooms. Sensory Friendly Concerts will be performed for families and children with intellectual and physical disabilities including autism and Down syndrome. The symphony will work with certified music therapists to present performances designed specifically for these communities.

Chicago Symphony Orchestra, $70,000
To support CSO Sounds and Stories. The project is a media portal featuring concerts, podcasts, commentary, and radio broadcasts made available for free public access online. The portal features content such as recordings of the educational program "Beyond the Score," live streaming of concerts, radio broadcasts, artist interviews, and program notes about the season's concerts, festivals, and themes.

The Cleveland Orchestra, $25,000
To support the development of an online archive of recordings by The Cleveland Orchestra. Guest curators will choose recorded performances from the orchestra's audio archives-which features work by conductors and composers such as Aaron Copland, Pierre Boulez, and Leonard Bernstein-for digitization and online presentation. To further contextualize the recordings, select works also will be accompanied by video interviews with the curators, digitized program books, and associated archival materials. Comprising audio recordings spanning 100 years of performances, the archive will be free to the public.

Colorado Music Festival & Center for Musical Arts, $15,000
To support the Click! commissioning program and composer residency. Music Director Jean-Marie Zeitouni will select a group of composers whose works will be presented over the course of the festival. Audiences will be invited to cast votes for their favorite composer. The composer receiving the most votes will be commissioned to write a new work to be premiered the following season. The current project will feature a performance of the commissioned work by the winning composer from the 2015 festival, Hannah Lash. She will take part in a weeklong residency that includes a Young Composers Institute for high school students as well as master classes, workshops, and open rehearsals.

Detroit Symphony Orchestra, $25,000
To support the expansion of Replay, a web portal intended for educational use. In addition to its existing archive of performances, Detroit Symphony Orchestra's (DSO) web portal will include composer and artist interviews, behind-the-scenes features, custom playlists, and other educational materials. Access to the portal will be available for free to all teachers and students participating in DSO educational activities and to students in DSO's Civic Youth Ensembles.

Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, $20,000
To support a touring program. Concerts and educational programs will take place in rural communities in Texas that are more than 100 miles from a professional orchestra such as Aledo, Brownwood, Glen Rose, Graham, Killeen, Mansfield, Mesquite, Southlake, Stephenville, and Waxahachie. In preparation of the educational concerts for youth, teachers will receive curriculum materials. The tour of performances of standard orchestral repertoire will be conducted by Assistant Conductor Daniel Black.

Gateway Chamber Orchestra, $10,000
To support a family and children's concert series. Programs will include Vivaldi's "Four Season" and Sergei Prokofiev's "Peter and the Wolf." Visual artists Kell Black and Barry Jones will create original animation and live video. The family concerts will be preceded by children's activities including guided craft projects related to the concert music and an instrument petting zoo for children to explore the various orchestral instruments.

Grant Park Music Festival, $34,000
To support the Grant Park Music Festival. The free summer festival will take place in the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park, the Harris Theater for Music and Dance, and at venues throughout Chicago. Performances will feature the Grant Park Orchestra and Chorus as well as guest artists. Programming includes a residency and world premiere of a new commissioned orchestral work by Michael Gandolfi as well as a performance of Berlioz's "The Damnation of Faust." Through the educational program Festival Connect, activities will include open rehearsals, pre-concert lectures, mentorship opportunities for pre-professional musicians, and a Young Artists Showcase by student ensembles.

Houston Youth Symphony, $15,000
To support Houston Youth Symphony's Coda Music Program, an El Sistema-inspired project serving Title I schools. The project will serve students with after-school music education. Twice a week, elementary students attending Houston Independent School District schools will receive group instruction from professional music educators, learning violin, viola, cello, or bass. Instruments are provided free-of-charge along with dedicated time for a nutritious snack and homework assistance as needed. One Saturday each month, students from the partner schools will come together for a local "seminario," a component of El Sistema programs where family and community are invited to a rehearsal or performance. Members of the Houston Youth Symphony orchestra program will be included as volunteer mentors.

Jacksonville Symphony, $10,000
To support a series of multidisciplinary activities in and around local and national parks, an Imagine Your Parks project. Activities will connect the downtown urban core of Jacksonville to nearby National Park Service sites within the Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve. The project will include a free multidisciplinary arts festival in downtown Hemming Park, the creation and unveiling of urban trailhead kiosks depicting surrounding national parks, participatory activities, and a performance by the Jacksonville Symphony of a new composition by Piotr Szewczyk inspired by National Park sites in Florida.

Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, $10,000
To support the Artists-in-Residence program. The music education program for pre-kindergarten through high school students will provide in-school and after-school learning experiences. Project activities will include in-school residencies with professional orchestra musicians at partner public schools, youth concert performances by professional musicians in the schools, "Musical Storybooks" performances in collaboration with the Kalamazoo Public Library, and a chamber music family concert series. The project also will feature presentations by musicians in preschool classrooms, private instruction for advanced music students, as well as music coaching and career guidance for the students of the Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestra.

Lancaster Symphony Orchestra, $15,000
To support Sound Discovery, a community engagement program. Open rehearsals, Music Discovery Performances for high school students, and an instrument-lending program will be offered. Other project activities will include a program offering free concert tickets for families, instrument petting zoos for elementary school students, master classes for students in high schools and universities, and student ensemble performances.

Los Angeles Philharmonic, $20,000
To support the production of the Inside the Music video series. Short videos highlighting the history, context, and artistic process of classical music performed by the Los Angeles Philharmonic will be created prior to seasonal concerts, and accompanied by a pre- and post-concert lecture series. Previously featured segments in the series include a meal prepared by chef Jose Andres inspired by composer Leonard Bernstein's "On the Waterfront;" a conversation between architect Frank Gehry and organ-builder Manuel Rosales on the design of the Walt Disney Concert Hall organ; and the history behind composer Gustav Mahler's use of massive wooden hammers in his musical works.

Lubbock Symphony Orchestra, $10,000
To support a chamber music program for incarcerated and marginalized youth. Chamber ensembles consisting of symphony musicians will present monthly performances in juvenile correctional facilities. The presentations will be interactive demonstrations utilizing chamber music to illustrate rehabilitative concepts such as productive participation in social groups.

Madison Symphony Orchestra, $20,000
To support HeartStrings, a music therapy-informed community engagement project. The orchestra's Rhapsodie String Quartet, with the training and participation of certified therapists, will offer residency programs and perform interactive recitals for underserved and special-needs communities. Locations will include healthcare facilities, retirement communities, and state-run institutions throughout Dane County, Wisconsin.

Mercury: The Orchestra Redefined, $10,000
To support the development and presentation of a cross-disciplinary music education workshop in at-risk Houston schools. The workshop focusing on physics-the third in a series about European literature and American Revolutionary history-will be developed by Mercury Education Manager and musician Andres Gonzalez. Musicians will be featured in the roles of scientists Galileo, Sir Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, and Neil deGrasse Tyson in the workshop titled It's All Relative. The characters will discuss their contributions to science and their love of music while playing period-appropriate works and recreating a scientific experiment on stage.

Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra, $12,000
To support an orchestral program for underserved youth. The Progressions program will provide free music education, private lessons, and performance opportunities for children from underserved communities who live in or attend school in the City of Milwaukee. The project will include jazz improvisation classes and a three-day intensive summer music camp. One of the program's primary goals is acceptance into the audition-based ensembles of the orchestra as students graduate from the program.

Nashville Symphony, $25,000
To support a performance and recording project featuring American composer John Harbison's "Requiem." The orchestra, under the direction of Music Director Giancarlo Guerrero, and the Nashville Symphony Chorus, under the direction of Chorus Director Tucker Biddlecombe will record live performances of the "Requiem" in Schermerhorn Symphony Center's Laura Turner Concert Hall. The recording will be produced, released, and distributed internationally by the Naxos label. In addition, the project will include related educational programs in Metro Nashville Public Schools presented by members of the chorus.

New York Philharmonic, $50,000
To support the New York Philharmonic's Philharmonic Schools program, a standards-based music education program in New York City public schools. The program will engage elementary students at partner schools through year-long, in-school residencies. Students will build skills and knowledge in music through structured listening activities, playing recorders and percussion, and participating in group music composition. Participants will have the opportunity to attend in-school performances and a Young People's Concert for Schools at Lincoln Center. Philharmonic teaching artists will design and deliver the program in close collaboration with classroom teachers, who will receive extensive professional development and curriculum resources.

New York Philharmonic, $75,000
To support "The New York Philharmonic This Week." Hosted by Alec Baldwin, the New York Philharmonic weekly broadcasts will feature performances, behind-the-scenes segments, and interviews with Maestro Alan Gilbert, guest artists and conductors, Philharmonic musicians, and others who can give the listening audience background and context for the musical program. The 2016-17 broadcasts will showcase music that celebrates the Philharmonic's 175th anniversary, including Philharmonic premieres, significant works from past performances, and previous Philharmonic artists such as Aaron Copland and Leonard Bernstein. The series also will commission works from established and emerging composers to premiere on the broadcast.

New York Philharmonic, $40,000
To support development and distribution costs for YPC Global, an interactive online platform for the New York Philharmonic's Young People's Concerts. Designed for both home and classroom use, YPC Global will include concerts from previous seasons, video demonstrations from YPC instructors, and interactive features that allow users to create original music and develop a deeper understanding of the music being performed. Intended for ages six to 18, the platform will be available for free to listeners across the United States.

The New York Pops, $10,000
To support the Holiday Family Concert. The New York Pops will collaborate with Carnegie Hall, Essential Voices USA, New York Theatre Ballet, and TADA! Youth Theater to produce a multidisciplinary staging of a classic holiday story. The concert will feature original choreography, costumes, animated projections, and musical arrangements. Young artists will perform in the production alongside professionals. Reduced ticket prices, educational programming, and participatory activities also will be offered.

North Carolina Symphony, $10,000
To support a performance project commemorating North Carolina's World War I history. The orchestra will perform Benjamin Britten's War Requiem with guest artists such as Nicholas Phan, tenor, Steven Posell, baritone, Tamara Wilson, soprano, the Raleigh Boy Choir, and the North Carolina Master Chorale. Photographic images from the Division of Archives and Records of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources will enhance the premiere performances of the work which will coincide with the 100th anniversary of America joining the war. The project will include community engagement and educational activities, such as an exhibition of wartime posters and images, pre-concert lectures, the inclusion of World War I music and history lessons in the curriculum-based statewide music education program, and free community orchestral concerts throughout the state.

Omaha Symphony, $10,000
To support community engagement initiatives across Nebraska. Titled Omaha Symphony Community Engagement Initiatives, the project will comprise numerous educational activities and community events, such as side-by-side concerts pairing professional and amateur adult musicians in Omaha and a community engagement tour of participatory, educational residencies throughout the state. The orchestra will work closely with instructors and musicians to present free orchestral concerts at Wayne State College in Wayne, Nebraska, and Grand Island Senior High School in Grand Island, Nebraska.

Orchestra of St. Luke's, $20,000
To support the development and promotion of a web portal. OSLmedia will provide users with access to the Orchestra of St. Luke's complete discography, instructional videos and games, artist interviews, podcasts, livestream events, and other interactive features. Available for free, OSLmedia is expected to reach as many as 80,000 users annually.

Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, $40,000
To support a performance touring project. During a national tour, the chamber orchestra will present diverse programming and be joined by guest artists such as pianist Christian Zacharias, violinist Vadim Gluzman, and cellist Alisa Weilerstein. Orchestra musicians will conduct in-school classroom visits at partner public schools throughout the tour. The project will engage audiences through live performances in states such as California, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.

The Philadelphia Orchestra, $75,000
To support The Philadelphia Orchestra's Free Neighborhood Concerts and PlayINs. Through its Engaging Diverse Communities and Musicians project, the orchestra will perform free neighborhood concerts, including the orchestra's annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute Concert, and conduct ancillary activities in several Philadelphia locations, such as the Great Plaza on Penn's Landing. Programming will be conducted by Music Director Yannick Nezet-Seguin and Associate Conductor Cristian Macelaru. In addition, an interactive initiative called PlayINs for musicians of all ages and all skill levels will be offered for specific instruments. Piloted in 2012, the first PlayIN engaged 200 community cello players at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. Since the inaugural event, the orchestra has conducted PlayINs for violin, woodwinds, harp, brass, and double bass.

Plano Symphony Orchestra, $10,000
To support the School Concert Education Program, a music education and engagement program. Students throughout the region will benefit from concerts and a classroom presentation toolkit with music audio clips. Orchestra musicians also will visit students prior to performances and distribute concert programs. Students will experience live performances by the orchestra with Music Director Hector Guzman at the Charles W. Eisemann Performing Arts Center in Richardson, Texas.

PostClassical Ensemble, $30,000
To support a performance and community engagement project. The multi-faceted project, titled The Shostakovich-Weinberg Connection-a PCE Immersion Experience, will include performances, a film, and educational events. Conducted by Music Director Angel Gil-Ordonez and directed by Artistic Director Joseph Horowitz, programming will explore the relationship and mutual influences between two Soviet-era composers, Dmitri Shostakovich and Mieczyslaw Weinberg, as part of a commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the Russian Revolution. The orchestra will perform Shostakovich's "Piano Concerto No. 1" and "String Symphony", as well as Weinberg's "Concertino for Violin and Strings" and "Symphony No. 10." A screening of Mikhail Kalatozov's 1957 Soviet film "The Cranes Are Flying," with music by Weinberg, also will be presented. In partnership with Georgetown University, American University, the National Gallery of Art, and the Washington DC Jewish Community Center, the performances, lectures, and community events will be held at several venues around the city.

Reading Symphony Orchestra, $10,000
To support an artist residency project featuring performances and community engagement activities. The Sweet Plantain Quartet will join the Reading Symphony Orchestra in celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month. The quartet will participate in the RIZE Foundation's Dance on the Street Bailando Music Fest and conduct in-school educational visits with students of the Reading School District. In addition, the quartet will perform at local universities and venues, such as Albright College, Alvernia University, and Women's Center of Reading. Organizational partners may also include the Berks County Community Foundation, Centro Hispanico, and Reading Musical Foundation.

San Diego Symphony, $20,000
To support a performance and community engagement festival. Titled SOL Music: A Celebration of the Border Region, the festival will feature the orchestra in performances with guest artists such as Mariachi Champana Nevin, Ozomatli, and The Romeros. Programming will include the world premiere of a new orchestral work featuring poetry by United States Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera. The week-long festival will be held at Embarcadero Marina Park South in San Diego.

San Diego Youth Symphony, $40,000
To support an effort to expand access to music education for public school students. A communitywide initiative of the San Diego Youth Symphony's Community Opus Project, the project will build on existing successes in developing long-term sustainability for in-school music instruction. An El Sistema-inspired program, students will receive free after-school instrumental music instruction with multiple opportunities to perform for the community. Camps are held in the fall and spring and include workshops, master classes, and the chance to work with guest conductors and artists. With project partners Chula Vista Elementary School District, Sweetwater Union High School District, and the VH-1 Save the Music Foundation, the symphony has created an opportunity to bolster public school music education in the district.

San Francisco Chamber Orchestra, $15,000
To support an educational community engagement project. Very First Concerts will be presented for toddlers and very young audiences and their families. Family Concerts will include the Side-by-Side program in which young pre-professional musicians participate in master classes and perform with the orchestra musicians in concert. Performances, under the direction of Music Director Benjamin Simon, will be offered free-of-charge at the Crowden Music Center and other venues, such as public libraries, in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Santa Cecilia Orchestra, $10,000
To support Discovering Music, an educational and community engagement project. Directed by Artistic Director Sonia Marie De Leon, the project will feature orchestral performances and educational programs at venues ranging from elementary schools to community centers. Discovering Music will introduce children to classical music through concerts and string instruction. The neighborhood concerts will enable families to join their children in a shared musical experience.

Sarasota Orchestra, $15,000
To support the Sarasota Music Festival. The residential training festival for college music students will be presented by the Sarasota Orchestra. Plans for the festival include individual and ensemble training, coaching, and mentoring from the faculty of instructors, scholars, and orchestra musicians. Performance opportunities will consist of weekly orchestra concerts, student chamber recitals, and chamber concerts featuring faculty alone as well as together with students.

Sphinx Organization, $65,000
To support a national tour and community engagement project featuring the Sphinx Virtuosi and the Catalyst Quartet. In partnership with the National Guild for Community Arts Education, Inc. (New York), a group of approximately 25 emerging young string players, laureates, and alumni of the national Sphinx Competition will tour and perform diverse repertoire by composers such as Franz Schubert, George Walker, Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson, Tania Leon, and Jessie Montgomery. The concerts and community activities with children and youth will be presented across the United States.

Spokane Symphony, $10,000
To support a music education and community engagement project for elementary school children and their families. Music Innovates is an after-school program for children in Spokane's Title I schools that offers free instrument lessons by the orchestra's musicians. In addition to weekly lessons, the project will include free concert tickets for families of the schoolchildren, as well as a culminating event called Orchestrating Greatness in which students will perform on-stage with members of the orchestra for their community.

Tacoma Symphony Orchestra, $10,000
To support a commissioning and performance project, including related outreach activities in collaboration with Mt. Rainier National Park, an Imagine Your Parks project. Titled Mountain and Sea, the project will result in an environmentally themed work celebrating Mt. Rainier for orchestra and chorus by American composer Daniel Ott, who grew up in Puyallup, a suburb of Tacoma that lies in the shadow of the mountain. Under the artistic leadership of Music Director Sarah Ioannides, the work will receive its premiere performance in the historic Pantages Theater. The project will include educational and community engagement activities with the composer and guest artists, as well as staff of Mt. Rainier National Park and the Museum of Glass.

Temple Symphony Orchestra, $10,000
To support a performance and community engagement project. The Temple Symphony String Quartet will perform and present educational programs in several local public school districts, as well as area retirement and assisted living facilities. Thematic concert programs will be designed to demonstrate the relationship between music and other art forms, such as dance, visual arts, and folk traditions.

Utah Symphony | Utah Opera, $12,500
To support staging and lighting costs, as part of a performance tour by the orchestra to national monuments and parks in Utah, an Imagine Your Parks project. The Monumental Summer Tour will reach audiences at Dinosaur National Monument and near Arches and Canyonlands National Parks, as well as communities in southeastern Utah near Natural Bridges and Hovenweep National Monuments. Under the artistic leadership of Music Director Thierry Fischer, the orchestra will perform free evening outdoor concerts at the parks and monuments, as well as engage the public through daytime activities, such as chamber music concerts and educational programming.

Virginia Symphony Orchestra, $15,000
To support the Harmony Project, a community partnership project with historically African-American churches in Hampton Roads, Virginia. Under the direction of Music Director JoAnn Falletta, activities will include ensemble and full orchestra performances, workshops, and a Martin Luther King, Jr., tribute concert. Through collaborations with city councils, churches, and educational institutions in several Virginia cities such as Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Chesapeake, Suffolk, Virginia Beach, and Windsor, the orchestra musicians will present educational performances and an introduction to the orchestra's instrument families at churches, youth ministries, and child development centers. Additional key project personnel include Resident Conductor Benjamin Rous, Community Engagement Liaison Dr. Marsha Staples, and Director of Education and Community Engagement Dr. Christy Havens.

West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, $20,000
To support a statewide touring and community engagement project. The orchestra, under the leadership of Artistic Director and Conductor Grant Cooper, will introduce orchestral and chamber music to new audiences throughout West Virginia, as well as present educational programming in schools. Programming may include Young People's Concerts and The Sounds of West Virginia, which will feature commissioned works by West Virginia composers, such as Matthew Jackfert, a native of Charleston. Concerts and events will be presented in rural and small towns in West Virginia, such as Beckley, Elkins, Fairmont, Hinton, Lewisburg, Parkersburg, Summersville, and Morgantown.

Wheeling Symphony Orchestra, $10,000
To support a regional performance tour with related educational outreach programs. The orchestra, under the direction of Music Director Andre Raphel, will present a Young People's Concert program in venues across West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. In collaboration with guest artist ensemble Classical Kids Live!, programming will feature an innovative program, such as "Beethoven Lives Upstairs," that engages listeners to explore music through dramatic artistry. The project will include teacher workshops and pre-concert instruction for elementary school children.

Related Art Works, Part Two Grants

American Pianists Association, $10,000
To support the outreach concerts and workshops performed by finalists of the quadrennial Classical Fellowship Awards. Each finalist will take part in residency activities including demonstrations, workshops, and master classes in local high schools as part of the Concerto Curriculum program, which will culminate in a public performance by each pianist and members of the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra. In addition, each finalist will perform a free concert for patients, staff, and the general public at an area hospital.

Bard College, $20,000
To support the El Sistema Side by Side Series at Longy School of Music. The program will pair student musicians ages seven to fourteen with those in Longy's Conservatory Orchestra at its Cambridge, Massachusetts campus. The younger students in the program will take part in a summer academy, as well as meet with conservatory students throughout the school year for rehearsals in preparation for public concerts.

Cleveland Museum of Art, $15,000
To support the Cleveland Museum of Art's Centennial celebration festival. The summer weekend festivities will activate the entire campus of the museum and will include music, visual and performing arts, family programming, and a concert by the renowned Cleveland Orchestra. A highlight of the celebration will take place in a Frederick Law Olmstead designed park, where 50 artists will be working "en plein air." Collaborations with community organizations including the Orchestra, Zygote Press, the Cleveland Public Library, and the Boys and Girls Club will help the museum reach new audiences.

The Cliburn, $10,000
To support a touring performance project featuring Van Cliburn International Piano Competition Winners. The pianists will perform in orchestral concerts and recitals, as well as conduct master classes and community outreach activities in diverse venues, from small towns to major metropolitan areas. Artists participating in the project will be selected from the 2017 Cliburn Competition winners.

Curtis Institute of Music, $30,000
To support the commission and tour of a new work, an Imagine Your Parks project. Alumnus composer Jonathan Bailey Holland will create a chamber work inspired by the Cape Cod National Seashore. Performances by Curtis students will take place as part of the Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival in Wellfleet, Massachusetts and at the Salt Pond Visitor Center in Eastham, Massachusetts in the Cape Cod National Seashore Park. Performances and/or talks will take place at the Nantucket Atheneum in Nantucket, Massachusetts and at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

DC Youth Orchestra Program, $10,000
To support the Children's Orchestra. The project is an El Sistema inspired, after-school string orchestra program focused on Title I D.C. public elementary school students. At no cost to the students or the school, teaching artists will provide as many as two hours of instrumental music instruction three times each week through group lessons and string orchestra rehearsals. In addition, the project will include side-by-side performances and master classes with professional musicians, such as those from the National Symphony Orchestra, and the opportunity to perform in professional concert venues, such as the Hall of the Americas of the Organization of American States and THEARC in Washington, D.C.

Education Through Music-Los Angeles, $35,000
To support weekly, year-long general music and instrumental music instruction for students in Los Angeles public schools. Professional music teachers will teach the classes and will receive ongoing training and mentorship throughout the year to implement standards-based lessons effectively. Students will perform in mid-year and year-end student concerts at school as well as in the community. The program will include professional development for classroom teachers and principals to learn to integrate arts learning into the curriculum. The program will build long-term sustainable music programs that will strengthen communities, as well as enable students to gain knowledge and skills in the arts. Program components include trips to symphony concerts, community art days, and family festivals.

Education Through Music, $40,000
To support the Bronx Partner School Program. The year-long music education program for youth in the Bronx will include standards-based, weekly music instruction for students by qualified music instructors; customized, ongoing training and professional development for music teachers, classroom teachers, and principals; and outreach to parents and community. Through long-term partnerships with schools, project activities will support student learning in music and other academic areas to enhance students' educational development, and build capacity among school and community members to sustain music programs. Program components include resource manuals for teachers offering sample lessons, school performances by professional artists, and performance opportunities for students at community events, including an annual festival bringing Education Through Music schools together.

From the Top, $45,000
To support educational outreach activities. Musicians selected by audition to appear on the classical radio program "From the Top" will take part in the Arts Leadership and Outreach Program. The workshops will help prepare young musicians to connect with new audiences and to serve as positive peer role models. The musicians will perform concerts in school classrooms and community venues.

Harlem Center for Strings, $15,000
To support the After-School Music Program. The Harlem Center for Strings will provide after-school sessions that will include private and group lessons, performance opportunities, and other community outreach activities for students of all ages from one of New York City's most economically challenged neighborhoods. Weekly private and group string instruction as well as classes on note reading, theory, and the musical styles of different cultures will engage students of East Harlem at local elementary schools.

Johns Hopkins University, $34,000
To support the Pathways to Peabody Initiative, a music education program for students in the Baltimore area. The program will include two components: Tuned-In and Performance Academies. Through Tuned-In, students will receive introductory instrumental music classes and participate in ensembles. Students at this level who have the skill and aspiration to pursue music at a higher level will have access to scholarships to study in one of the Performance Academies. Performance Academies are audition-based programs in which students receive private lessons, music theory and performance classes, and have access to master classes with guest artists. The program provides a "pathway" for low-income students to enroll at the Peabody Preparatory and upon acceptance, the Peabody Conservatory.

KV 265, $15,000
To support the Science and Symphony Program. The program will combine science, art, and education through the creation and presentation of a multidisciplinary work featuring music and multimedia visual art projections. The work, based on scientific themes, will be available to tour to symphonies and educational institutions, and will be accompanied by a suite of educational and outreach programming.

Lone Tree Arts Center, $10,000
To support arts programming for underserved audiences and related activities at the Lone Tree Arts Center. Audiences served will include children and seniors, as well as individuals with developmental disabilities, autism, and sensory processing disorders, and their families. Programming will include youth, senior, and sensory-friendly matinee performances, as well as puppet shows, movement classes, and hands-on learning provided by area institutions such as the Denver Zoo and Colorado Symphony.

Miami Children's Museum, $15,000
To support Art Bursts, a series of arts engagement events for youth. Children will have the opportunity to engage in the visual and performing arts through performances, workshops, demonstrations, and discussions with professional artists. Artists from partner organizations such as Diaspora Vibe Cultural Arts Incubator, Florida Grand Opera, Miami City Ballet, New World Symphony, National Young Arts Foundation, Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation, and the Seminole Tribe of Florida's Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum, as well as painter Xavier Cortada, will work with the museum to create the interactive programs.

Miami-Dade County Public Schools, $20,000
To support the educational outreach project The Orchestra Dances!, an introduction to orchestral music for fourth graders. A partnership with The Cleveland Orchestra, the project is part of the district-wide annual Cultural Passport initiative that provides standards-based arts education activities to students from elementary through high school grade levels. Educational outreach activities will be conducted in Miami-Dade County Public Schools, with orchestral performances at Knight Concert Hall in the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts.

Michigan Technological University, $20,000
To support Listening to Parks, an Imagine Your Parks project. Visual and sound artists will collaborate to create an interactive and immersive multimedia installation based on collected images, video, and audio recordings from the Keweenaw National Historic Park, Isle Royale National Park, and the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. The installation will tour to sites in the Upper Peninsula region of Michigan. Composer Elizabeth Meyer will use field recordings from the park sites to create a new composition to be performed by the Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra. Educational programs for students in K-12 and the general public also will be offered.

Midori & Friends, $45,000
To support Learning with Music, music instruction and enrichment programs for students in New York City public schools. Programs are customized to align with each partner school's needs and vision for arts learning, expanding the schools' existing music programs. Offerings will include the 12 Note program, in which professional teaching artists will provide strings, woodwinds, guitar, brass, percussion and voice lessons in small group classes and instrumental ensembles. 12 Note students may perform in the CityMusic annual showcase. Partner schools may also subscribe to the Signature Concert & Workshop Series, in which professional artists will provide interactive concerts and workshops at the schools, introducing students to varied genres including classical, jazz, blues, gospel, and global music traditions. The program will include a five-part professional development series for teaching artists that will guide instructors in implementing the Milestones of Student Learning curriculum in their lesson plans.

Music Haven, $10,000
To support Music 101, a tuition-free, year-long, after-school music education program. Program components will include free instrumental music lessons, musicianship classes and one-on-one mentoring for students living in high-poverty neighborhoods. The Music101 program is a response to parental feedback about the existing free after-school lessons program that began in 2006. Students participating in those weekly lessons needed help to increase practice time, progress in their one-on-one lessons, acquire music concepts, and needed more academic support and mentoring. Music 101 will be offered three times a week, buses will be provided for participants who would otherwise not have transportation, healthy snacks will be available, and other support services will be offered.

Omaha Performing Arts, $20,000
To support Musical Explorers, a music education and engagement program. In partnership with the Carnegie Hall Weill Music Institute, students' basic music skills will be built as they learn songs from different cultures and reflect on their own communities. Designed for kindergarten through second grade students, the project will include a comprehensive curriculum with accompanying audio resources, professional development for teachers, and workbooks for students. The year-long program will culminate with a participatory concert in the Holland Performing Art Center's Kiewit Concert Hall.

Paragon Ragtime Orchestra, $10,000
To support the Paragon Live performance and outreach project. The Paragon Ragtime Orchestra will conduct more than ten performances showcasing works by American composers from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, presented in a show-style manner with narration, use of rare original orchestrations, and authentic instrumentation, in pre-1930s historic American theaters. Ancillary activities may include master classes and coaching of student ensembles by orchestra musicians, lectures by Artistic Director Rick Benjamin on topics relating to the performances, silent film viewings with live orchestral accompaniment, and performance programs adapted for school audiences with classroom study guides made available to teachers prior to the performances.

Path with Art, $20,000
To support an arts education program for adults. Professional teaching artists will conduct courses for adults who are dealing with issues including homelessness, addiction, and mental illness. Classes will be offered in disciplines including dance, theater, visual arts, and literature, and will culminate in a final exhibition or performance. Courses will be hosted by partner organizations throughout Seattle, including the Frye Art Museum, Richard Hugo House, Seattle Symphony, Freehold Theater, Seattle Art Museum, the University of Washington, Recovery Cafe, Plymouth Housing Group, Low Income Housing Institute, and the Washington State Convention Center.

Ravinia, $15,000
To support Reach*Teach*Play. The Ravinia Festival Association will continue its partnership with the residents of Chicago's Lawndale neighborhood through community outreach and educational programs for children and adults. Additionally, Reach*Teach*Play will offer free lawn passes for residents from Chicago's West Side and will present One Score, One Chicago, an initiative that introduces new audiences to classical masterworks. The project also will include KidsLawn-an area at the outdoor concerts with music-related arts and crafts and an instrument petting zoo. Project activities also will include a community-based music school in Lawndale.

The Sarasota Ballet, $25,000
To support the restaging of Roland Petit's "Carmen." The company will build or buy sets and costumes for the ballet to bring this masterpiece into their repertoire. As a way to maintain fiscal sustainability, the sets and costumes will be inventoried for lease to other ballet companies around the world. The performance will take place at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall and will be accompanied by the Sarasota Orchestra. The company plans to hold numerous educational and outreach events for the public, including a film series and lectures, plus educational programs for students and youth.

Saratoga Springs Performing Arts Center, $10,000
To support artist fees for Gold and Green: SPAC's 50th Anniversary Celebration in the Saratoga Spa State Park, an Imagine Your Parks project. A partnership with Yaddo and The Philadelphia Orchestra, the commissioning and performance project will feature a new work by former Yaddo resident composer Michael Torke commissioned for The Philadelphia Orchestra, SPAC's longtime resident ensemble. Performances will be held at SPAC in Saratoga Spa State Park, a National Historic Landmark.

Settlement Music School, $45,000
To support Kaleidoscope Pre-Kindergarten Arts Enrichment Program, a music, dance, and visual arts-integrated pre-kindergarten Head Start program. Teachers and childcare professionals will receive professional development classes in implementing the arts-integrated curriculum. Teaching artists will prepare detailed weekly plans identifying objectives, organizing concepts, challenges and projects related to the weekly activities. Students are grouped in classrooms by age and spend half the instructional day in a traditional early learning classroom, and the other half in visual arts, dance/creative movement, and music classes in specially equipped studio arts environments. The program is offered tuition-free at two Settlement branches in Philadelphia to preschool through kindergarten-age children from low-income families.

University of Rochester, $20,000
To support a commissioning, performance, and touring project, an Imagine Your Parks project. Titled Music in the American Wild, the project will feature performances of new works by composers affliated with the Eastman School of Music, drawing inspiration from America's national parks. The works will be performed in parks across the country, such as the Great Smoky Mountains, Mammoth Cave, North Cascades, Olympic, and Shenandoah National Parks. Composers will include artists such as Robert Morris, Aaron Travers, Kevin Ernste, Tonia Ko, Adam Roberts, and Daniel Pesca. Activities will include educational events and field recordings that will be shared via an online travelogue. Local activities in Rochester will include a performance at the George Eastman House, an educational engagement partnership with ROCmusic, and a performance and studio recording of the new compositions at Eastman School of Music.

University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point, $20,000
To support the Very Young Composers of Central Wisconsin music composition project for elementary students. University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point college students serve as teaching artists, who, with the support of music faculty and local elementary music teachers, will guide the Young Composers through the process of developing their own compositions. The program will include a select group of Young Composers who will expand their original compositions into full orchestrations for symphony orchestra or wind band for performance in concert by the Stevens Point Area Senior High Orchestra and Wind Ensemble.

World Science Foundation, $20,000
To support performances of "Icarus: Time, Space, and Destiny" and related educational programming at the World Science Festival. Physicist Brian Greene, composer Philip Glass, and filmmakers/visual artists AL and AL will collaborate to create a multidisciplinary production blending science, music, film, and narrative elements. The foundation will host a series of master classes for middle and high school science teachers about the science behind the work. Teachers will receive a guide to help them incorporate the science into their own classrooms. Students will then attend a special performance of "Icarus" performed by the New York Philharmonic.

Technology News of Note

May 2016

With the accelerating pace of technological change, the League posts a monthly digest of relevant news and information regarding changes, trends, and developments that may affect the electronic media activities that orchestras use to achieve their institutional missions. For each monthly digest, the League’s electronic media consultants, Michael Bronson and Joe Kluger, draw from a variety of websites and publications to provide excerpts or summaries of articles. (These do not necessarily represent the views of the League.)

League members with questions about the information in this digest or about other electronic media topics – e.g., planning, strategy, and production – may contact Michael Bronson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or Joe Kluger at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


Facebook Live, Annoying and Intrusive, Seems to Be Paying Off

Media companies and amateurs have found validation in surprisingly large audiences by posting on Facebook’s new video product, Live.  Facebook Live — the product — is working.  But not for everyone. Mention Facebook Live on Facebook and a chorus of slightly peeved voices emerge from people who find the notifications annoying. Facebook is mostly mum about how — or when — money might flow from the videos.  Facebook users have their own guesses, of course. Said one: “They’ll get more people using it, then hide the alerts because we’re already complaining and then charge companies to get the alerts back.” Is this just pessimism?  Or is it just that access to an audience is sometimes worth paying for? (Source: New York Times)


The Fight for the Future of NPR

A slow-moving bureaucracy. An antiquated business model. A horde of upstart competitors. An article in Slate analyzes National Public Radio’s prospects for survival in a rapidly changing world of media aggregating, delivery, and consumption.  (Source: Slate)


How Dropbox Is Changing the Music Business

Dropbox will be joining the ranks of Universal Music Group, Nielsen Music, Pandora, United Talent Agency and other influential entertainment companies as a sponsor and participant at upcoming music conferences. Their participation, along with partnerships they are setting up with new media companies, is reflective both of Dropbox’s mission to expand its reach in creative industries and of the music industry’s recruitment of technology companies to help brainstorm innovative solutions for its own future. Like music conferences themselves, Dropbox has served as a key convergence point for music professionals in recent history, from artists and producers to publishers and curators. Online lifestyle publication NEST HQ releases its weekly curation of free downloads via Dropbox, while music podcasters and producers like Hrishikesh Hirway and Ducky use the service to exchange stems for collaborations and remixes. Other common use cases of Dropbox in music include sending contest submissions and storing press shots, promo links, and other assets. (Source: Forbes)


Anthony Horowitz Drama New Blood to Premiere on iPlayer

In a nod to changing patterns in the way consumers are using technology to view entertainment, Anthony Horowitz's new crime series New Blood is to become the first prime time drama to premiere on BBC iPlayer ahead of transmission on BBC One. (Source: BBC News)


Challenge to Google Books Is Declined by Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has refused to revive a challenge to Google’s digital library of millions of books, turning down an appeal from authors who said the project amounted to copyright infringement on a mass scale.  The Supreme Court’s brief order left in place an appeals court decision that the project was a “fair use” of the authors’ work, ending a legal saga that had lasted more than a decade.  In 2004, Google started building a vast digital library, scanning and digitizing more than 20 million books from the collections of major research libraries. Readers can search the resulting database, Google Books, for keywords or phrases and read some snippets of text.  The Authors Guild and several writers sued Google in 2005, saying the digital library was a commercial venture that drove down sales of their work.  The Authors Guild said that the Supreme Court’s decision to not hear the case would leave writers vulnerable to copyright infringement. It also suggested the case would have broader impact beyond the book industry. (Source: New York Times)


Is YouTube a Music Industry Devil or Buzz-Making Deity?

YouTube said in late 2015 that its parent company, Google, had generated more than $3bn (£2bn) for the music industry since its launch in 2005. The point here is that YouTube does pay, but not enough for artists, managers, labels, and publishers. This formed the basis of last week’s IFPI’s global music report, which argued that after 15 years of decline the record business is only starting to recover from a “value gap” that has threatened to sink it. IFPI said that last year an estimated 900 million users of ad-supported services such as YouTube generated only $643m in royalty payments for record labels, whereas 68 million paying subscribers to services including Spotify, Apple Music, and Deezer collectively generated $2bn. (Facebook, which is heavily promoting its role as a channel for music videos, currently pays no royalties.)  YouTube responded to these criticisms by claiming that 80% of people who consume music online would never pay £10 a month for a subscription service and so the service has to be “monetized” through ads. (Source: The Guardian)


MPBN to Launch Separate Classical Music Radio Service in May

After years of trying to meet the competing demands of its radio listeners, the Maine Public Broadcasting Network plans to launch a separate classical music service on May 9. The new service will offer more classical music, nearly 24 hours a day, but for many MPBN listeners, including those in Portland, it may be harder to find.  Maine Public Classical will be available over the air from new MPBN radio stations in Waterville, Bangor, and Fryeburg, as well as online and on HD radios statewide, and hopes to launch a Portland-area classical station soon.  (Source: Portland Press Herald)


Charleston Symphony Orchestra to Stream Performance Online Saturday for First Time

For the first time in its history, the orchestra’s performance will be streamed live online, so anyone anywhere can watch Saturday’s performance inside the Gaillard Center. It’s an effort by the orchestra to spread its reach beyond the peninsula and the Lowcountry — to show anyone willing to tune in that even though Charleston’s a small city, its orchestra can play on a bigger stage. (Source: The Post and Courier)


Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s Video On-Demand Streaming Video Service Selected as a 2016 MITX Awards Finalist

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s (DSO) Replay campaign, an on-demand streaming service offering an online library of concert footage on Brightcove’s Gallery platform, has been selected as a finalist in the B2C Integrated Marketing and Cause and Nonprofit & Government Marketing categories for the 20th Annual MITX Awards.  DSO sought to offer its patrons an on-demand library of archived webcasts to drive donor donations. Launched in August 2015, DSO Replay, powered by Brightcove Gallery, leverages the archives to inspire giving; as a benefit for giving to DSO’s annual fund, donors are able to access and enjoy more than 150 high definition videos of past performances. DSO provides a two-minute Replay preview to new site visitors and offers complimentary full access to those who make a $50 donation. At launch, more than 5,000 annual fund donors had full access to DSO Replay.  (Source: Business Wire)


Facebook will Stream the SF Symphony Live on Wednesday

People around the world were able to get a taste of San Francisco recently, when Facebook streamed a live webcast of the San Francisco Symphony.  The broadcast, which kicked off at 8:15 pm PST on April 27, was the first time a major symphony orchestra has used Facebook Live to premiere a new work. The webcast was free to watch, and available for music lovers around the world to enjoy live, as well as archived for audiences to enjoy in the future.  (Source: SFGate)


Survey to Examine Fallout from Live to Digital Streaming

A new piece of research into the impact of ‘live to digital’ streaming on live theatre, touring, and new audiences has been launched to fill in “knowledge gaps” in the U.K. marketplace and “inform policy and investment”.  The intention is to look across the spectrum of streamed theatre – from event cinema to on-demand TV broadcasts and screenings in ‘alternate venues’ -- and work out, in the context of changing patterns of leisure time and a tighter economic climate:

  • How to support smaller players entering the market
  • If there is displacement from attending live theatre or independent cinema
  • If ‘Live to Digital’ is having an impact on touring patterns
  • Strategies for developing new audiences
  • What support – if any – distribution needs.

(Source: Arts Professional)

League President and CEO Comments on Recent Controversy Surrounding Diversity Meeting

As President and CEO of the League of American Orchestras, I was present at the April 26 meeting of arts service organization leaders hosted by the National Endowment for the Arts, in which a conversation on “Diversity, Inclusivity, and Equity in the Arts” occurred. I was seated at a table of eight that included both Michael Butera, Executive Director of National Association for Music Education, and Keryl McCord, Operations Director for Alternate Roots, and was tapped to report out to the full group on the results of our conversation.

I write now in part as an observer and participant but also as one deeply concerned about the urgency of taking constructive steps to address diversity, inclusion, and equity across the arts community. This is a process that calls for national arts leaders to step up and engage with one another and not give in to the forces that would divide us. 

I can attest to the accuracy of Keryl McCord's account of what was said and what took place. Mr. Butera indeed said that he could not take action to diversify his board, and that African Americans and Latinos lacked keyboard skills needed to advance in the music education profession -- two statements which many of us around the table challenged. The group was unable to further pursue the meaning of his comments as Mr. Butera abruptly and angrily walked out of the room, well in advance of the meeting's scheduled end time.

If the arts community is to accelerate progress in the areas of diversity, inclusion, and equity, we must all, especially national leaders, be prepared to navigate difficult conversations. When it gets uncomfortable you're probably in the right place. But, care must be taken to maintain respect, to listen actively, to ask questions, to assume good intentions, and above all, to remain engaged. The true pursuit of equity requires staying at the table when the conversations get tough.

As a national arts organization that is immersed in conversations and efforts related to diversity and inclusion, the League is taking steps to address a long and persistent lack of diversity in our field and to close gaps in access to arts education in our nation's schools.

The incident at the NEA reveals the opportunity and pressing need for the arts community, in all its diversity, to find common cause in a just and equitable arts ecology committed to access and excellence for everyone.


Jesse Rosen
President and CEO, League of American Orchestras
May 10, 2016