Theatre Musicians Gather Forces

A Power Fund is Launched

Volume CVI, No. 6June, 2006

Tino Gagliardi

The Local 802 Broadway Theatre Committee is pleased to announce the establishment of the Live Broadway Orchestra Preservation Fund (LBOPF). Following the Broadway negotiations in 2003, in response to sentiment expressed by many Broadway musicians, there was much discussion on the committee to consider such a fund in order to expand our resources for public relations to help educate our audiences as to the importance of live music in the orchestra pits of Broadway.

In a survey in the spring of 2004, Broadway musicians overwhelmingly indicated their interest in a collective fundraising effort to promote the publicity and negotiating needs of the Broadway community with regard to upcoming negotiations.

As a response, the Theatre Committee voted unanimously for an amendment to the committee’s bylaws requiring the formation of a fund. The amendment specifies how the funds are to be used and where the authorization for expenditures lies. It was adopted on July 27, 2005 and is reprinted here in the shaded box.

Last year, the Theatre Committee submitted an application to the Department of the Treasury for 501c(5) tax-exempt status under the Internal Revenue Code. The exempt status was crucial in ensuring the fund’s success by allowing the monies to accrue without being taxed.

After long deliberation and requests for additional information by the Treasury Department, exempt status was granted on April 27, 2006.

Soon after, the committee opened a business account with the Actors’ Federal Credit Union and the Live Broadway Orchestra Preservation Fund officially came into being.

Although contributions will be accepted from anyone who understands the dire need for preserving live music on Broadway, the Theatre Committee suggests that all musicians working in Broadway shows consider a voluntary contribution of one dollar per show based on the number of shows they perform. If all regular and substitute musicians contributed at this level, we would be able to generate a sizable resource. Contributions of any size will be welcomed.

At this time, only checks will be accepted. The Theatre Committee is currently pursuing methods for online contributions and will announce when that convenience is made available.

Checks can be made out to “LBOPF” and addressed to the Office of the Controller, Local 802, 322 West 48th Street, New York, NY 10036.

Tino Gagliardi is co-chair of the Theatre Committee.

What is LBOPF?

The following is the Theatre Committee bylaw article controlling the Live Broadway Orchestra Preservation Fund (LBOPF).

VIII. Live Broadway Orchestra Preservation Fund (LBOPF)

A. The Theatre Committee shall establish the LBOPF.

B. The LBOPF shall be administered through the office of the Controller of Local 802 AFM.

C. The LBOPF shall be funded by voluntary contributions.

D. Authority for the approval of expenditures from the LBOPF shall rest solely with the Theatre Committee.

E. Funds from the LBOPF shall be used to augment funds which are available to the Broadway Community from Local 802 AFM, and may only be used for:

  1. Public relations efforts beneficial to the Broadway Community.
  2. Supplemental legal services at or pertaining to negotiations.
  3. Expert advisors at or pertaining to negotiations.
  4. Expenses incurred for the operation of the LBOPF.

F. The President, Recording Vice President, and Financial Vice President of Local 802 AFM, and the Chairperson and Co-Chairperson of the Theatre Committee shall be authorized to sign checks drawn on the LBOPF for expenditures authorized by the Theatre Committee. Said checks must be signed by two (2) of the above-mentioned persons.

G. If the Theatre Committee decides to abolish the LBOPF, all remaining funds in the LBOPF shall be disbursed to the Local 802 AFM Emergency Relief Fund.