Now is the right time to become an American Federation of Musicians member. From ragtime to rap, from the early phonograph to today's digital recordings, the AFM has been there for its members. And now there are more benefits available to AFM members than ever before, including a multi-million dollar pension fund, excellent contract protection, instrument and travelers insurance, work referral programs and access to licensed booking agents to keep you working.

As an AFM member, you are part of a membership of more than 80,000 musicians. Experience has proven that collective activity on behalf of individuals with similar interests is the most effective way to achieve a goal. The AFM can negotiate agreements and administer contracts, procure valuable benefits and achieve legislative goals. A single musician has no such power.

The AFM has a proud history of managing change rather than being victimized by it. We find strength in adversity, and when the going gets tough, we get creative - all on your behalf.

Like the industry, the AFM is also changing and evolving, and its policies and programs will move in new directions dictated by its members. As a member, you will determine these directions through your interest and involvement. Your membership card will be your key to participation in governing your union, keeping it responsive to your needs and enabling it to serve you better. To become a member now, visit www.afm.org/join.

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Orchestra News

Los Angeles Philharmonic Receives $20 Million

The Los Angeles Philharmonic will receive $20 million from technology entrepreneur and philanthropist David Bohnett. The gift is the second largest in the orchestra’s history.


Minnesota Orchestra Announces Small Deficit

The Minnesota Orchestra ended its fiscal year with a deficit of $650,000 on its $29 million budget. This deficit was lower than expected and was welcomed as good news. The orchestra is working to rebuild its financial health following the musician lockout that ended in January 2014.


Detroit Symphony Orchestra Achieves Another Surplus

For the second year in a row, The Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) ended its fiscal year in the black, with a small surplus of $60,000. Subscription numbers increased across all series, with a total of 13,760 subscriptions sold. Overall ticket sales increased as well, with revenue $200,000 higher than last season.


Cleveland Orchestra in the Black

In fiscal year 2014, The Cleveland Orchestra was in the black for the first time since 2001, with a $1 million surplus on its $47.8 million budget.


Revised Notice to Musicians Employed Under US Collective Bargaining Agreements

Sections 8(a)(3) and 8(b)(2) of the National Labor Relations Act permit unions in non-right-to-work states to enter into collective bargaining agreements with employers that require employees, as a condition of employment, either to join the union (and thereby enjoy the full rights and benefits of membership) or to pay fees to the union (and thereby satisfy a financial obligation to the union without enjoying the full rights and benefits of membership).


Multi-Card Member Rebates

Effective January 1, 2015, members who belonged to three or more Locals throughout 2014 can petition the AFM Secretary-Treasurer for a “rebate equal to the per capita dues received by the Federation” for that member’s membership in each AFM Local in excess of two.


Saving San Diego Opera; A Success Story

A few months ago I read a blog by Mark Blackmon that really moved me. The title of his post was “How Closing San Diego Opera Makes Your Life Worse.” He wrote…


Fair Trade Music Shows Seattle Musicians They Have Power

Fair Trade Music Seattle (FTMS) was launched through a public meeting in 2012. “We saw a major part of our industry in Seattle with no union presence,” explains Local 76-493 (Seattle, WA) President Motter Snell. “When affected musicians came to us, we took action. This has the potential to build new leadership, and help improve wages and working conditions for area musicians.”


MPTF Gears Up to Build Success Through Momentum in 2015

The Music Performance Trust Fund (MPTF) begins the new calendar year with continued awareness that we clearly share the same challenges that the rest of the creative music community faces.


“Cromnibus” Government Spending Package: What’s in It for the Arts?

As the 113th Congress comes to a close and Republicans prepare to take over both chambers, Congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle, for both practical and political reasons, battled in the final month of 2014 over passage of government spending priorities.








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