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



A Union Win for Olney Theatre Musicians

After a six-month campaign, musicians at Olney Theatre in Maryland overwhelmingly voted to unionize in a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) election. Musicians are now working with AFM Local 161-710 (Washington, DC), preparing for their first collective bargaining agreement. The victory is an important first step in Local 161-710’s organizing plan.

Toledo ROPA Conference Brings in Local Labor Experts

The 31st annual Regional Orchestra Players’ Association (ROPA) Conference convened last summer in Toledo, Ohio, at the Grand Plaza Hotel. The conference provided a terrific learning opportunity for the representatives of our 86 member orchestras from around the nation.

AFM Solidifies Federal Arts Relationships

On August 25, AFM International President Ray Hair traveled to Washington, DC, to strengthen our ties with federal arts leaders. This full day of activity ended with solid gains in our relationships with two of our nation’s most historic and highly valued arts agencies

ICSOM Delegates Gather in Philadelphia

This year’s International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians (ICSOM) Conference, held August 26-29 at the Sonesta Philadelphia Hotel, celebrated advocacy and diversity, and provided labor law education and important negotiating and contract administration ideas and information.

Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Hires New CEO

Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) has hired Jennifer Barlament as its new CEO. Barlament has been general manager of The Cleveland Orchestra since 2013.

2016 AFM Diversity Awards: Recognizing Innovation and Union Building

The AFM Diversity Awards were created to recognize outstanding examples of diversity in the Federation. As an arts and entertainment union, our organization is immersed in talent from a strong demographic base that represents every musical genre

How to Encourage Union Membership

There are some myths and false claims for why people are afraid to join the union. Here’s how to deal with those people and how to encourage union membership.

Senza Sordino: Stalwart of Unity

Of all the tools that ICSOM makes available, none are more topical and historically significant than our quarterly newsletter, Senza Sordino.

Boston Local 9-535, Getting Results

This month, as a part of my series highlighting the outstanding legislative work being accomplished across the Federation, I am honored to shine the spotlight on AFM Local 9-535 (Boston, MA) and its president, Patrick Hollenbeck.

The Best Defense Against “Right to Work”: Organize!

“Right to Work” can destroy the working people in any state the law is active, but the best defense against “Right to Work” is extremely simple: organize!