DAMTA President’s Message
We find ourselves heading into another academic year! This means a new fall course! Our fall course last year was so well received that we are doing a similar theme this year. We have a great line up of guest speakers covering different styles and periods of music history. Please sign up for the Fall Course and spread the word. The fall course is our main income generating activity and always instructive and fun. I look forward to seeing you all there!
We had a board meeting on July 20, and made a significant decision I want to share with you here.
I had heard from a few different members a desire to do away with the $5 musicale fee. In the past, I was resistant to this idea, as reducing DAMTA income is not something I usually support.
But I have also been aware that collecting these fees has been fraught with problems. People end up with a combination of checks and cash with no easy way to get the fees to the treasurer. Families forget to bring money and then the host has to try to chase them down for payment later. It’s common for fees to be missing weeks, even months after the actual musicale date.
And when I heard that the hassle of collecting the money was making people reluctant to host, that got my attention. I know it’s always hard to find musicale hosts.
So this coming year we are trying an “experiment”. For the 2017-18 school year, the board has decided to wave the $5 musicale fee. I am hoping that this will encourage greater musicale participation for both hosts and performers, and make the musicales more trouble free for the hosts.
Hosts will still need to make programs and send 2 copies of those programs to Aileen Voyles so she can forward them to CSMTA and the appropriate royalties can be paid to composers. (The living ones. Beethoven is not a member of ASCAP!) Since we are no longer charging the musicale fee, the costs of printing programs falls to the hosts. I think it’s a small price to pay for the convenience of not having to collect the fees.
At next summer’s board meeting, we will assess this experiment. If we have greater participation and more volunteers to host, we’ll consider making the change permanent. But if all that happens is lost income, we’ll reinstate the fee.
The musicales do not cost DAMTA money to host as Classic Pianos is kind enough to give us their space for free. So I feel this is an experiment that we can afford.
I encourage you all to step up and make this experiment a success!