Why Did You Join the Union?

Volume CVIII, No. 9September, 2008

From time to time, as space permits, Allegro will spotlight some new or readmitted members.

I joined Local 802 to enable me to be in a community of people like myself who will always look out for my best interests on stage. And my musical goal in New York City is to show audiences that a 26-year-old violinist can hopefully reignite their love for music not only audibly, but visually as well. I play the electric violin on stage with Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy.
Jared Burnett

I joined Local 802 to be in solidarity with my fellow musicians. I feel that it’s important that unions exist to champion musicians’ rights and negotiate benefits that improve the quality of life for musicians. It also gives us a “home base,” so to speak. My musical goal in New York City is to experience all the different venues the city has to offer and to meet as many of my colleagues as possible. It’s extraordinary to make friends and fun to maintain those friendships in this great city. It has always been a dream of mine to collaborate with other jazz talents and put together something beautiful and New York City is a fabulous place to do this. 
Diana Perez 

I am a freelance flutist working in several states and residing in Connecticut. I am already a member of Locals 400 (Hartford), 171 (Springfield, Mass.), and 234-486 (New Haven) but I joined Local 802 after being called last minute to sub on Broadway with “Wicked,” with which I toured nationally in the past. I enjoyed it so much (and the commute wasn’t so bad using Metro North!) that I am looking forward to continuing to make music with the many talented musicians of New York City in the future.
Kim Collins

I’ve been playing drums for over 20 years now. As a child growing up, I learned to play by sitting in and hanging out with the “big guys” at a gospel church. Over the years I have worked at high school musicals, colleges and theatres as a drummer and percussionist. At a gig in Nyack, I was the house drummer for a weekly jam session. Watching other people abuse my drums broke my heart enough. I felt there’s got to be a better way to utilize the hard work I give to this God-given talent I have. One day while browsing the Internet I discovered Local 802 and decided to join. I have high hopes that someday my membership will materialize into freelance jobs as a studio drummer by day and cabaret drummer by night, but best yet would be to land work on Broadway.
Joe Domingo

I presently do a live soul/oldies show for a living. I joined Local 802 after transferring from another local in the hopes of finding contacts and collaborations that will help to boost my songwriting efforts into the mainstream.
Jon Turk 

I joined Local 802 because I am going out on the road with the first national tour of “Spring Awakening.” I am a bass player and have been making a career as a theatre musician in New York and hope to continue to do so upon my return.
Julie Danielson

I transferred back from Local 30-73 (Minneapolis-St. Paul), where I’ve been playing and conducting regional theatre for the past 15 years. My musical goal is to kick it up a notch and do the same on Broadway. I’d love to sub! My principal instruments are piano and keyboards.
Tom Mustachio

I joined Local 802 because I value the importance of the union and know that it will come in handy. Without the union behind you, this business can be overwhelming; it’s nice to know I have someone on my side if something happens or I need advice. My goal in New York is to play my bassoon, and I am open to any avenue that allows me to do so. I originally moved here to pursue graduate studies in bassoon and found this to be a place full of limitless possibilities. 
Katie Holland

I’m a composer and conductor from Canada. I moved here recently on a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts, to study with Jim McNeely. I joined the union so that I could take advantage of the large and convenient rehearsal space for reading sessions with my jazz orchestra, the Tiny Alligator Large Band.
Caitlin Smith