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.
May 29, 2020IM -
Musicians at many orchestras continue to make sacrifices amid the pandemic to assist their organizations in weathering this difficult time.
The Boston Symphony Orchestra is reporting $10 million in revenue losses from the cancellations of 130 events, including its tour of Asia. Its musicians—members of Local 9-535 (Boston, MA)—have agreed to pay cuts through the end of August, averaging 25% per player. Musicians have offered to restructure their vacation time for the next two years. Also, adjusted media language will allow the orchestra to use archival concert footage while live concerts are unable to happen. The media language reached is part of an agreement with the AFM.
Musicians of the Cleveland Orchestra—represented by Local 4 (Cleveland, OH)—took a 20% pay cut in April and May, and will take a 30% cut for June through September. The organization has launched a $6 million fundraising campaign to help fill in the revenue gap, with $3 million already pledged by board trustees.
At the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, musicians—represented by Local 5 (Detroit, MI)—have agreed to a 20% pay cut through August as well as adjusted work rules that will allow for additional summer performances—should health guidelines and trends make that possible.
The San Francisco Symphony expects $5.4 million in losses from canceled events. Pay cuts taken across the organization between April 19 and September 5 average 25%. San Francisco Symphony musicians are members of Local 6 (San Francisco, CA).
At each organization, staff members are sharing in the burden, also taking salary cuts and in some cases experiencing layoffs or furloughs.