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


Member Profiles, On the Cover

Dec 2022 IM Cover

Mary Corbett: Positive Energy Creates Positive Outlook

“It’s a remarkable thing that we get to do this for a living,” says Corbett, a violinist in The Florida Orchestra (TFO) since 1989 and member of Local 427-721 (Tampa Bay, FL). Her warmth and enthusiasm are infectious as she speaks about her good fortune. “Even after all these years, I know how tremendous it is that I am able to make my living doing this, and I never stop appreciating it.”

Balancing Act: Kristy Norter Talks Talent, Contracting, and Giving Back

Broadway reed doubler Kristy Norter of Local 802 (New York City) is quick to start off an interview by pointing out two things. First, she is careful to give props to the other female contractors who came before her and laid the groundwork for her success on the job. And second, she prefers the term […]

Julie Ferrara: Broadway Tours Embracing Positive Change

Julie Ferrara of Local 802 (New York City) likes to joke that her career has gone in reverse. “Most pit orchestra musicians get on tours with the hope of eventually making it to Broadway,” says Ferrara, a woodwind doubler currently touring the country with Disney’s musical Frozen. “Instead, I worked on Broadway for 14 years before entertaining the opportunity to go on the road.”

ASI Audio System

New Metropolitan Opera Orchestra Agreement Adds Hearing Protection for Orchestra Musicians

Under the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra’s August 2021 collective bargaining agreement, audiology visits and custom earplugs are included for every musician. 

Violinist Inspired by Nature Says It’s Important to Give Back

Calling Sandra Wong of Local 1000 (Nongeographic), one quickly realizes the cell phone connection is slightly dodgy. “I live up in the foothills outside of Boulder, Colorado,” says Wong. “I’m off grid on a Jeep road, and my place is solar powered.” For some, this might be an inconvenience. For Wong, a violinist, it’s a […]

Gary Kreller: Canadian Accordionist Plays It Forward

Gary Kreller happened to see a Facebook post about a 10-year-old musician in need of an accordion. Kyrylo Kisten had to leave his accordion behind when he fled Ukraine with his mother in March. Kreller, of Local 226 (Kitchener, ON), didn’t hesitate to offer one of his, especially after he clicked on the YouTube link […]

Isabelle Chapuis: The Perfect Life of a Flutist

Isabelle Chapuis of Local 6 (San Francisco, CA) says it’s important to have multiple perspectives to fully embrace the repertoire.

Patrick Varriale: A Legacy of Dedication to Electronic Media Services

We tragically said goodbye to AFM Electronic Media Services Director Patrick Varriale who died suddenly on May 13. If you knew Pat Varriale, you knew of his deep love and dedication to the AFM, its member musicians, and his colleagues. He never missed an opportunity to recognize those who worked with him and looked out […]

Houston Brass-Playing Couple Share a Life in Music

Theresa Hanebury and Nancy Goodearl of Local 65-699 (Houston, TX) When two of Houston’s busiest brass players, who also happen to be a couple, want to share some downtime together, it can sometimes require comparing calendars. It’s a scenario that will be familiar to just about every musician couple anywhere. Nancy Goodearl, a horn player […]

Reed Doubler Finds Calling as Teacher and Musical Theater Advocate

As a professional musician, educator, and secretary-treasurer of the DC-Baltimore Chapter of the Theatre Musicians Association (TMA), Brian Butler of Local 161-710 (Washington, DC) has made it his mission to create a generation of music lovers. Butler’s training on clarinet began at age 9, quickly followed by turns in band on sax and flute. He […]