Volume CX, No. 9September, 2010
UNION’S LIVE MUSIC CAMPAIGN IS REVIVED
Local 802’s plan to reinstate a long-dormant media campaign is moving forward on several fronts. The focus of the campaign will be to remind the public why live performance art is important and raise awareness that its existence may be in jeopardy.
The Executive Board recently approved a budget to finance a series of 1010 WINS radio ads to be voiced by several well-known 802 celebrities. The ads will encourage listeners to enjoy the diversity of live music in New York City while bringing attention to 802’s important role in the city’s cultural and economic life.
Among other projects, the newly created Broadway Communication Subcommittee has already created a “Broadway Musicians” page on Facebook which posts recent news articles and other information for those who support live music in NYC theatre. (Since searching for Facebook pages can be tricky, Allegro has posted a shortcut link at www.TinyURL.com/BroadwayMusicians)
The Executive Board’s Public Relations Subcommittee has met with the Broadway Communication Subcommittee to coordinate overlapping campaign strategies and the best deployment of union resources. Both subcommittees have met with the 802 officers as well.
In other live music news, Local 802 once again supported the “Piano in the Park” series at Bryant Park this summer, which showcases live piano music to a lunchtime crowd.
WEBSITE MUSIC MEANS MONEY FOR MUSICIANS
Local 802 was recently successful in collecting about $2,100 in wages and benefits on behalf of musicians in a settlement with SpotCo, the agency that produced TV commercials for the show “Finian’s Rainbow.” Additional payments became due to musicians when music from the commercial recording session were released on the “Finian’s Rainbow” Web site.
REHEARSALS & AUDITIONS
If you are doing rehearsals or audition work that is not under a union agreement – through a casting agent or otherwise – please contact Mary Donovan at Mdonovan@Local802afm.org. Local 802 is looking into developing scales and working conditions for this work. We want to explore the possibility of making the work union. We plan to set an exploratory meeting soon.
LOST HEALTH INSURANCE?
If you recently had insurance and you’ve just lost it, remember that you may be able to continue the same insurance for a period of time by paying for it out of your own pocket. This is called COBRA. There are even some state and federal subsidies, so that your COBRA payments may be reduced or even free. Allegro featured a comprehensive story about this in our February issue. A copy is posted at www.TinyURL.com/AllegroCobraStory
UNION OFFERS LIABILITY INSURANCE FOR BANDLEADERS
If you’re a bandleader, you may be asked to show that you have liability insurance for your band when you play at a hotel, catering hall or other venue. Local 802 offers liability insurance through its payroll service at reasonable rates. For more information, call (212) 245-4802, ext. 175.
OUT OF WORK?
If you are a Broadway musician and your show closes, can you apply for unemployment? Yes. While you are collecting unemployment, can you sub on other Broadway shows, teach lessons, and play other freelance gigs? Yes, but your unemployment check may be reduced. For a comprehensive look at musicians and unemployment insurance, see Harvey Mars’s article at www.TinyURL.com/MusicUnemployment
MUSIC FOR HEALTH CARE?
There is an innovative program called Artist Access that lets you play music in exchange for health care credits in New York City. For all the details, see www.TinyURL.com/ArtistAccess
NEED FINANCIAL HELP? WE’RE HERE FOR YOU
Are you facing eviction or a big medical bill that threatens to bankrupt you? Local 802’s Emergency Relief Fund (through the Musicians’ Assistance Program) may be able to help.
The fund gives limited grants to musicians in need.
To apply, contact the union’s social worker Cindy Green at MAP@Local802afm.org or (212) 245-4802, ext. 180.
Cindy can also help you apply for other financial help from sources like the Actors’ Fund and other relief organizations.
Thanks to everyone who donated to the Emergency Relief Fund during our appeal last year. If you are in a position to help us, please contact Financial Vice President Jay Blumenthal at Jblumenthal@Local802afm.org or (212) 245-4802, ext. 105. The financial report of the fund can be found in the printed issue.
SAVE BIG ON CONSUMER REPORTS ONLINE
Do you use Consumer Reports online? If not, you should. A special discount program allows Local 802 members and other union members to save big on online subscriptions to ConsumerReports.org.
The special $19 annual online subscription to ConsumerReports.org (an annual savings of $7) includes online access to:
All the content of the current issue of Consumer Reports magazine
All Consumers Union product reports
Online discussions with ConsumerReports.org experts
Let ConsumerReports.org and Union Plus team up to help you make the right choices and keep on saving by going to www.UnionPlus.org/ConsumerReports.