In Brief

Volume CIX, No. 10October, 2009

Are we on the Fringe? Yes, and we’re proud of it


Want to get connected? Come and network with new members at a special “meet and greet” on Wednesday, Oct. 28 from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Local 802. Refreshments provided!

This event is especially for musicians who performed in this year’s Fringe Festival and New York Musical Theatre Festival, but all musicians are welcome.

The Fringe festival was back this year, and Local 802 was meeting and networking with new theatre musicians both there and at the New York Musical Theatre Festival.

This is crucial work. Not only can we bring new members on board, but we can make early connections with both musicians and producers. Then, if and when shows make it big, we have relationships already in place. This makes a big difference when we try to unionize a production.

Between 2005 and 2009, we’ve visited over 150 productions.

Three festival productions have gone on to Broadway:

  • “Next to Normal”
  • “Urinetown”
  • “[title of show]”

In addition, nine have made Off Broadway with a Local 802 union contract:

  • “Joys of Sex”
  • “Evil Dead”
  • “Gutenberg! The Musical”
  • “Walmartopia”
  • “Altar Boyz”
  • “Captain Louie”
  • “The Great American Trailer Park Musical”
  • “Rooms”
  • “Slut”

As part of our outreach we invite musicians to a networking meeting at Local 802. Musicians are encouraged to take this opportunity to meet professionals in the theatre business who may be able to advance their careers. (See box on right)

Money for gigs? Yes!

If you’re a good organizer and want the chance to win some funding, the AFM’s Music Performance Fund may be able to help you pay for a performance. Here are some of the basic guidelines:

  • You must find, organize and book the job yourself.
  • The performance must be free and open to the public. Performances must not be for religious services and there cannot be donation requests or fundraising as part of the concert.
  • The Music Performance Fund will not pay 100 percent of the cost of the gig. You have to show that you have co-funding through a “co-sponsor.” This co-sponsor could be a grant from an arts agency (for example), or it could be the venue itself. For instance, if you are performing at a nursing home, the nursing home may agree to co-fund the performance. Or if you are giving a lecture-demonstration at a New York Public School, the school system may be the co-sponsor
  • Educational programs are a top priority for the fund.

Other restrictions apply. If you’re interested, contact Theresa Couture at (212) 245-4802, ext. 115 or

Sinatra CD pays up

If you performed on a concert 23 years ago, can you still get paid? For the 46 musicians who played with Frank Sinatra at the Meadowlands in 1986, the answer is yes.

Concord Records just released a recording of that concert called “The Best of Frank Sinatra.” Recording Supervisor Jay Schaffner was able to win a special settlement with Concord that will pay the original side musicians $1,011.50 each, plus a pension payment of $209 and a health payment of $99.50.

Violist Rose Tillotson-Price played on the original gig and told Allegro, “It is remarkable to me that after 23 years, this concert paid over $1,000 for a new CD. Frank is still taking care of his musicians! Thanks, Local 802!”