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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Articles, Symphonic Services Division

The Care and Feeding of Solidarity

What does unity look like for an orchestra? To our public, we appear unified in our formal attire performing with unity of thought and action.


“Gig”— An 800-Year-Old Word Musicians Have Used for Almost 100 years

Freelance symphonic musicians share common ground with “gig economy” workers, from the multiple sources of their income to the variety of work they perform.


When Organizing, There Is a Tool You Can Rely On: The Wage Charts Website

Using data from the wage charts, you can ensure your aspirational vision is not a mirage and that there are other institutions where your aspirations are reality.


Symphonic Organizing, Solidarity and Inclusion

Welcome to the symphonic focus issue of the International Musician for 2019 which focuses on symphonic organizing, solidarity and inclusion.


Building a Movement in Boise

Just prior to the 101st convention of the AFM, the International Executive Board approved the charter of new Local 423 in Boise.


How the Newfoundland Symphony Achieved Its First Collective Agreement

On June 15, the members of the NSO ratified their first collective agreement.


Highlights of the New Integrated Media Agreement

On April 15, after 18 months of extremely difficult bargaining, the AFM and the Symphony, Opera and Ballet Employers’ Electronic Media Association (EMA) reached agreement on a successor Integrated Media Agreement (IMA).


Using wagechart.afm.org to Understand the Symphonic World

Wagechart is an online platform where most current, as well as historic, data about wages and working conditions for symphony orchestras affiliated to the players conferences are collected and made available for ad hoc industry analysis.


It’s Back to Basics to Maintain Our Rights as Workers

During a recent AFM local officer training session, in the question session at the end of my presentation on “right to work” laws, a new officer raised her hand and stated: “It looks like we have to get back to basics.” Not coincidentally, this is also the current strategy that many unions, including the AFM, have adopted.


Symphonic Services Division Making Connections on Stage and Beyond

Welcome to the 2018 Symphonic Services Division (SSD) special edition of the International Musician! In this issue we focus attention on a range of musician-led initiatives to connect musicians with their communities in ways that yield benefits for all involved.








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