Board Meeting August 12, 2020

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

In attendance: Hanan Bell, Teresa Metzger-Howe, Koko Morgan, Linda O’Gara, Doug Potter, Bruce Sherman, Kim Waggie and Gennie Winkler.

The minutes for the June 17, 2020 were approved as corrected.

Results of Last Meeting's Action Items
A. Bruce/Teresa Interviews
Bruce and Teresa interviewed Madeline Beery, Gennie Winkler, Maria Akiyama and Ron Bolles about their experiences as a member of the Rain City Symphony. These interviews will be posted to the website after Bruce does a little editing.

B. 4Culture Money
Madeline was unable to attend the meeting. An update on the 4Culture Money was postponed.

C. Gennie to explore with Dan Williams and Grant Reed - possibility of Wind Ensembles
The possibility of the wind ensembles gathering is bleak. The risk of the spread of the Covid-19 virus is too great.

D. Letter to Orchestra Members
Doug sent an email to the orchestra members to let them know what the Board had been discussing for this Fall. The following is the letter he emailed on June 25, 2020 :

I’m sure you’ve been wondering what’s going to happen next season at Rain City Symphony. Your board has been discussing this since April. The picture is from our recent board meeting.
The short answer is we don’t know yet. We have some ideas, but everything about this pandemic is so fluid that concrete plans made today can be obsolete tomorrow.
From the Governor’s four phase plan, it’s clear that we need to be at least Phase 4 before we can meet as we have in the past with all 60+ of us in the same room. Even then, high risk populations such as the over 60 crowd should avoid large groups – and there is a large portion of us in that category.

The Music Center’s plan for Fall is “Small ensembles and group classes allowed to resume in-person meetings in the Recital Hall, observing strict social distancing guidelines.” By their calculation, 24 people can fit in the recital hall with appropriate distancing.

It’s important to remember that anything I tell you now can easily change as we approach September. However, given these restrictions, out current plan is:
1. Have two string orchestras rehearse on alternate Wednesday nights (assuming more than 24 string players wish to participate).
2. Have Wind players (aerosol instruments) get together in small ensembles with appropriate distancing. A coach will work with each group for at least one session.
3. Make recordings and assemble a virtual concert of all these groups to present in early December. We may intersperse some interviews of long term orchestra members with the performances.

Once again, this is just the current plan. We welcome your comments and suggestions. We meet again in August to discuss your feedback – as well as the current public health guidelines – and revise the plan. Accordingly, please feel free to share your thoughts and concerns with us.
Also, the board wants you all to know that we appreciate the wonderful response we got to our May appeal for financial support. Many of you sent us the dues for Spring Quarter – and several sent quite a bit more. Thanks for your help and support.


Finances - Last Fiscal Year Wrap Up -
The Symphony has approximately $28,000 in bank. Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan will be used to pay the conductor and the Music Center of the Northwest.

Music Center of the Northwest (MCNW) Discussion Summary
Chas Arnold, Executive Director of MCNW, had a study conducted to the analyze ventilation system at the Center. The results were that 15 people can safely be in the upper hall if the windows open and fans on.

Suggestions for Fall
We will not be able to get together as a large group. Small groups might be able to get together. This will make raising money for the United Churches homeless fund difficult. The music from the various ensembles or individuals that choose to play during the Fall quarter might be able to be used raise money for the fund.

For Fall quarter small groups might be able to be coached in person or on-line via Zoom. Gennie will ask the coaches if they would be interested in participating. The Music Center of the Northwest has the space to make in person coaching possible.

Another possibility is what Bellevue Youth Symphony is doing. They meet 45-75 minutes per quarter via zoom doing score study, researching history on the composer, and playing individually. Click tracks are used to help the students play in rhythm. Then, they listen to each other's tapes and critique one other. One other project is a full orchestra recording. The Symphony hopes to meet and record in person at the end of the quarter. Technical support would need to be hired to help with the non-live recording.

On-line gatherings could be made possible with the use of technology. We need to ask the tech savvy members to be a guinea pigs in using software. There are two possible Apps that could be used, Upbeat and JamKazam. Bruce has used JamKazam. There are special technical requirements that have to be met to use this program. The technical problems are extensive, but they can be worked out.

Action Items
Hanan will create a survey to ask the past symphony members if they would like to participate. If so, how they would like to participate.