Volunteer Notes Spring 2010

The Newsletter for Symphony Orchestra Volunteers

 

The Newsletter for
Symphony Orchestra Volunteers

Spring 2010

Greeting: Message from Our President

Hearing From You: Talk to Us

Attending: Message from the Conference Chair

Educating: Programs at Conference

Awarding: Gold Book Online Awards of Excellence

Discussing: Roundtable Award Winners

Connecting: Networking Opportunities

Learning: Project Profiles

Project of the Month: Symphony Celebrities

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VOLUNTEER NOTES is published four times a year by the Volunteer Council of the League of American Orchestras, the nonprofit service and educational organization dedicated to the development of American symphony orchestras and to the cultural vitality of the
communities they serve.

 

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Gold Book Online -- The Resource for Volunteer Projects

Greeting: Message from Our President

Volunteer Council President Jane Van Dyk

Volunteer Council President Jane Van Dyk

The National Conference will be in Atlanta June 15–19, 2010. What’s in it for you? Why should you go? The Volunteer Council met in New York recently to plan the most volunteer-friendly, volunteer-relevant sessions you can imagine. Here is a sneak preview of the highlights of the Volunteer Track and what you can look forward to:

♫ Online user-friendly registration form--quick and easy. One price for everyone. No more waiting until the last minute to see how many delegates are going from your association to get a discount.

♫ A warm welcome from the host orchestra’s volunteer association - The Atlanta Symphony Associates, who will also present some of their terrific projects.

♫ Roundtables - back by popular demand. Top-notch volunteer projects from around the country will be presented in a brief overview with time for your questions and their answers.

♫ Gold Book Awards of Excellence - a perennial favorite. Winning projects that have been submitted to the Gold Book Online over the last year will be presented.

♫ Pizza Networking Volunteer Luncheon - at a very special low price. Featured speaker will be composer Jennifer Higdon, one of America’s most frequently performed composers and the recipient of many awards.

♫ Volunteer Dine-Arounds - Tuesday evening meet new friends from across the country in a small group and enjoy dinner at one of Atlanta’s famous restaurants. (Sign up and we will make all the arrangements for you.)

♫ Panel Discussion - featuring the presidents of four diverse volunteer associations. What are the essentials of volunteer leadership? What skills does the volunteer leader of tomorrow need to develop today?

♫ Networking opportunities galore - Meet and mingle with like-minded volunteers to share your interests, questions, and advice.

♫ A fun, spontaneous new format to talk in small groups about questions you want the answers to.

♫ Southern hospitality in one of the South’s most historic and charming cities.

There will be all this in Atlanta and much, much more.

The Conference will be focused on what the future holds for orchestras. As an integral part of the orchestral family, we volunteers need to be a part of the conversation.

See You in Atlanta!

Click here http://www.americanorchestras.org/conference_2010 for up-to-the-minute program information, registration, and hotel information.

Jane Van Dyk
President

Hearing From You: Talk to Us

Sandra Weingarten, Volunteer Notes editor

Sandra Weingarten, Volunteer Notes editor

Our National Conference is a great time for volunteers to connect and share information, ideas, and questions as well as to learn directly from the Volunteer Council members. However, we are here to communicate with you all year. We welcome your questions and suggestions. What can we do to better help you? Please let us know. You can contact me at

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and I look forward to hearing from you.

Sandra Weingarten
Volunteer Notes Editor

Attending: Message from the Conference Chair

Helen Shaffer, conference chair; photo by Asher Kelman

Helen Shaffer, conference chair; photo by Asher Kelman

Register Now!

League of American Orchestra Conference in Atlanta

June 15 – June 19

Easy instructions:

1. Click here to learn more about Conference

2. Click here for more information on Conference registration

Click on Registration Form to officially register.

Fill in the applicable fee

Choose the events in which you want to participate

Click on Hotel to reserve a room (optional)

And finally submit. Hooray!!! You did it!!!

3. Click here for more information on booking your hotel.

You see it is easy and quick! Just Click! Click! Click!

Why, other than the best Conference would you want to go to Atlanta?

  • It is one of the most beautiful cities in the country
  • Outstanding restaurants
  • MARTA (Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority) gets you from the airport direct to your hotel in record time and for a reasonable cost.
  • Hear the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra perform the Verdi Requiem and enjoy other music opportunities
  • Outstanding side trips such as Stone Mountain
  • Fabulous Museums
  • Experience great Southern hospitality
  • The best volunteers from U.S. and Canada will be there
  • Meet new people who have the same passion – GREAT MUSIC

Helen Shaffer
Conference Chair

Educating: Programs at Conference

Chuck Cagle, program chair

Chuck Cagle, program chair

ATLANTA 2010 - CELEBRATING GREAT MUSIC AND THE VOLUNTEER SPIRIT

The program committee of the Volunteer Council has been busy assembling programs that highlight new music, recognize successful volunteer programs and projects, and offer ample opportunity for discussions with colleagues on issues related to successful, productive volunteer organizations.

The events begin with a greeting from our Volunteer Council President, Jane Van Dyk, and a welcome from our hosts, the Atlanta Symphony volunteers.

We are extremely fortunate to have, as our keynote speaker, composer Jennifer Higdon. Hailed by the Washington Post as “a savvy, sensitive composer with a keen ear, an innate sense of form and a generous dash of pure esprit,” the League reports that she is one of America's most frequently performed composers. The Grammy Award-winning Higdon has been a featured composer at such summer festivals as Tanglewood, Vail, Norfolk, Winnipeg, and Cabrillo. She has served as Composer-in-Residence with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (2005-06 season), the Green Bay Symphony Orchestra (2006-07 season), and The Philadelphia Orchestra (2007-08). Higdon enjoys more than two hundred performances a year of her works and her compositions have been recorded on over two dozen CDs. Higdon received the 2010 Grammy for Best Contemporary Classical Composition for her Percussion Concerto. She currently holds the Milton L. Rock Chair in Composition Studies at The Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.

One of the most anticipated parts of our program each year is the time we celebrate the work of volunteer organizations as we honor projects submitted for inclusion in the Volunteer Council's Gold Book Online. Following the project presentations, the celebration continues with pizza lunch for those in attendance.

Add to all of that the ample opportunities for roundtable discussions, networking, and fellowship with volunteer colleagues and one can see that Atlanta 2010 is a conference you don't want to miss!

Chuck Cagle

Program Chair

Awarding: Gold Book Online Awards of Excellence

Would you like to learn about how some of the most successful volunteer projects were created? What ideas can you take home from them? Every year at Conference, it is fascinating to see the presentations of our award-winning projects and this year there are projects spanning several areas.

For example: The Waco (TX) Symphony Council will present their fundraiser “Celebrity Conductor Contest,” and the Spokane (WA) Symphony Associates will tell us that “It’s in the Bag.” The Symphony Guild of Charlotte (NC) will unveil a new membership idea “O-‘ver-ture: Opening new Doors for Music-A-Luncheon.” In the education field, the Innovators of the Dallas (TX) Symphony Orchestra League will show us “The Red Violin Program: Follow an Instrument as it Journeys from Student to Student.”

Learn also about effective community engagement and innovative business models.

See these award-winning projects--take the opportunity to meet the presenters and ask questions. See how many new ideas you can bring back to your volunteer organization!

Terri McDowell
Awards Chair


Discussing: Roundtable Award Winners

Photo by Asher Kelman

Photo by Asher Kelman

The Roundtables are back!

You asked the Volunteer Council to consider bringing back the Roundtables and we listened. We are excited to have representatives from the four corners of the country present their prize winning-projects at Conference in Atlanta.

There will be four rounds where you will have fifteen minutes at a table to learn about each project. This is a unique opportunity to not only hear the presenters tell about their projects but also to ask questions. The winners include projects in the categories of Fundraising, Leadership, Service, Membership, Strategic Planning, and Community Engagement. What a great opportunity to be able to question the creators of these projects directly! What can you learn from them?

See you in Atlanta!

Dee Tenney
Roundtable Awards Chair

Connecting: Networking Opportunities

Caryl Kassoy, networking chair

Caryl Kassoy, networking chair

The Volunteer Council had a wonderfully successful and productive gathering at its winter meeting in New York City. The Networking team is organizing just what volunteers say they want more of at each League Conference: networking, networking, and more networking. To take advantage of our offerings, be sure to be in Atlanta June 15–18, 2010.

Plan to arrive in time for the “Volunteer Dine Around” on Tuesday evening, June 15th, from 6:00 to 8:00pm. We will eat together in small groups in order to introduce ourselves. Make sure to sign up on your registration form so that we know you will be joining in. We will make the arrangements.

On Wednesday morning the volunteers will be together beginning at 10 a.m., and we are planning a panel discussion to address leadership issues--a topic that interests all of us. In the afternoon there will be the ever-popular Roundtable presentations.

On Thursday, we are bringing back the pizza networking lunch that was so successful last year. In addition to the informal lunch and conversation with your peers there will be a fascinating speaker: composer Jennifer Higdon. We are thrilled that she will be participating as some of us have met her, and she is delightful. This will be followed by the presentation of the Awards of Excellence.

Friday morning there will be time to have input from all of our constituents. Plan to bring your questions, concerns and great ideas to share. Play Stump the Council!

The Volunteer Networking team is looking forward to your participation. You will help make this Conference a success.

Caryl Kassoy
Networking Chair

Learning: Project Profiles

Judy Christl, awards committee

Judy Christl, awards committee

Gold Book Online offers both networking and sharing of information--major services of the Volunteer Council. Submissions come from any of our member volunteer associations, and the top projects are invited to present at Conference. Here is a glimpse of some winners from the past four years. They offer new ideas, new twists on long-standing projects, and wonderful creative suggestions that you can adapt to your own needs. Note also that the winners cover all group sizes, from large to small, from across the entire country.

In 2006, OPUS, The Jacksonville (FL) Symphony Young Professionals, won an award for their audience development/membership project “Plugged-In Concert Series.” The goal was to engage a younger, under 40 audience by combining music that draws this demographic with symphonic sound.

2007 brought in two education winners. Friends of the Augusta [GA] Symphony presented Collage: Creative Arts Camp, an integral component in extensive education and community engagement strategy that enhances orchestral programs for families and children. Santa Barbara Symphony League presented their “Music Van,” which brings hands-on music demonstrations to third graders.

There were 9 winners of the 2008 Awards of Excellence, covering all categories and ranging from showhouse concepts to an estate/yard sale, to a new take on the popular “Painted Violins.” Many traditional fundraising ideas now incorporate aspects of community engagement and audience development.

Last year’s winners and Conference presenters included tried and true but highly successful education projects like Charlotte’s “Musical Petting Zoo” and “2008 Designer Showcase: ‘The Art of Design’” from Southwest Florida Symphony Society. But the ideas don’t stop there. How about a membership “Pictionary Tournament” (Nashville Symphony Orchestra League) or a “Memorial Bowl” by Junior Members of the Women’s Symphony League of Tyler (TX). And that’s only four of the total ten winners.

Take a look at goldbookonline.org to see the breadth and depth of our many prior winners and learn the details of the projects. Come to Conference this year to hear first-hand from the 2010 Awards of Excellence winners and to talk with our Roundtable winners--back by popular demand.

Judy Christl
Awards Committee

Project of the Month: Symphony Celebrities

Janet Barb, awards committee

Janet Barb, awards committee

Fundraising got you down? If you are in doubt about spending money to attend this year’s Conference, please read on. Today, raising money is even more crucial and more difficult. At Conference you will network with new friends, but even better, you will learn about successful, tried-and-tweaked enterprises! Expect to be coached on outlines for excellence, and gear up for an opportunity to make your marathon sprint around the popular Roundtables, where you will connect with dynamite music lovers as they parade their successful projects. Our ‘presenter pros’ look forward to answering your questions and providing the handouts and hand-holding you need to hurry home and spin their ideas into your success!

Want a novel plan that will guarantee ticket sales in advance? Take a look at “Symphony Celebrities.” The Illinois Symphony Orchestra Guild of Bloomington-Normal, competing in a city with many notable galas, fashioned an event that embraced it all: fundraising, gourmet dining, auction and networking. Table sponsors, the “Symphony Celebrities,” each hosted a table of friends and associates where they provided a catchy theme and their unique fundraising project. Twenty tables? Twenty possibilities! Something for everyone! Excited delegates strolled from table to table to schmooze … while fundraising.

Check out goldbookonline.org for more details.

Come to the Conference and learn about this year’s award-winning projects. Your time and money will be well spent, and you won’t be disappointed.

Janet Barb
Awards Committee

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