ICSOM offers forum for musicians’ concerns

Posted on: August 18, 2010

In Sunday’s (8/15) Houston Chronicle, Tara Dooley writes, “More than 100 classical musicians from the nation’s largest orchestras will arrive in Houston on Wednesday to discuss their concerns and futures. The International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians was created to advocate for members of the American Federation of Musicians union. In recent years, though, the group has taken on a greater role promoting symphonies and the arts, said Bruce Ridge, conference chairman and a bass player in the Raleigh’s North Carolina Symphony.” Asked what the biggest issues are facing orchestras today, Ridge says, “One, I think, is definitely advocacy. Generally speaking, I think we haven’t learned to cultivate the media and really get our message out to promote orchestras. Number two is having to stave off, in some places, the attempts to reduce the size of the orchestras permanently. We think that will set off an irreversible trend that will eventually kill off orchestras as opposed to saving them. … I think that places that are really articulating the message of what they can do will thrive. People will invest in organizations that inspire them.”

Posted August 18, 2010