Public Outreach is Key to Success

Volume CX, No. 9September, 2010

Wally Usiatynski

As chair of the Broadway Theatre Committee, I was approached earlier this year with the concern about the need to promote the image of the Broadway musician. I set out to appoint a public relations subcommittee to come up with ideas.

I immediately found four people with terrific thoughts about P.R. and who were willing to serve.

Their knowledge, experience and enthusiasm convinced me that we had formed a winning team!

Mairi Dorman-Phaneuf, Ralph Farris, Greg Thymius and Will Van Dyke were soon joined by Julie Ferrara to form the committee.

Even before the first meeting it was determined that public relations alone would not be sufficient to promote our image.

If we didn’t have a good image of ourselves, then no amount of P.R. could give us a better image to the public.

What is needed is a means to communicate not only with the public, but within our own ranks.

How we relate to our brother and sister union members, management and staff, and each other, will have a direct affect on how we are perceived.

With that in mind, the committee was named the Broadway Musicians Communications Subcommittee.

The CSC has already implemented two initiatives:

  • Encouraging members to participate in “talk-backs.”
  • Working with Local 802 in the Broadway League’s Green Initiative.

Both of these can broaden the relationship with those around us, including the public.

Broadway musicians will be receiving notices encouraging participation and explaining how important these functions are.

The committee is currently working on ideas for better public relations, including school outreach, social media/networking, concerts/parades, and cross-industry collaborations.

If you have an idea that you think can give the Broadway musician a better image, or would like to become involved, please contact the Broadway Musicians Communications Subcommittee at

And check out our Facebook page! To go there, try this shortcut link:

Walter Usiatynski is a percussionist and the Chair of the Broadway Theatre Committee. The Theatre Committee meets every other Wednesday between shows at Local 802 and is open to all Broadway musicians.