A first-of-its-kind project
designed to showcase a cross-section
of the nation’s symphony orchestras
—one per state—
in a single online “musical montage”
celebrating the USA!
- COVID-19 has disrupted our relationships with the Arts.
- During this time of crisis, it’s especially easy to forget why an orchestra is important to the community.
- Venues are closed, and it may be a long time before audiences feel comfortable congregating.
- Orchestras are cutting or curtailing performances, pay, and health insurance.
- Fundraising across the nation is challenging. A high-profile “rally and re-launch” project would be mutually- beneficial.
- The nation is severely divided and in need of healing. What better way than by celebrating our diverse musical heritage?
EDUCATE, ENTERTAIN, INSPIRE!
- Explain and illustrate the diverse ways professional symphony orchestras make a profound difference in communities across the nation!
- The 55-minute program will showcase the participating orchestras’ highest impact events… what performances look and sound like in your community!
- The universal value propositions of our orchestras will be made abundantly clear, with room for nuanced explanation of local customs and traditions!
- It’s less about the musical piece, and more about your event. We want to showcase the events that have the highest impact within our communities!
- The program will serve as an industry rallying point; educate, entertain and inspire the American public; and promote learning from each other!
– Music Director for Lexington Symphony and Music Director Emeritus of Boston Ballet Orchestra after 29 years as Music Director, maintains an active schedule as guest conductor and lecturer at prestigious institutions around the world. Mr. McPhee’s compositions and arrangements are performed internationally and published by Boosey & Hawkes, Inc. & Schott Music Publishers in Germany.
– Recognized for coining the term “signature event,” Biondolillo is the nation’s leading developer of branded marketing and fundraising programs, as well as its leading event-fundraising training resource. Notably, Biondolillo events have raised more than $1.5 billion, and led the peer-to-peer fundraising field from a $20 million per year trickle to a $2 billion per year industry.
– A publisher and producer of special-interest media and multimedia events at both well-established and startup media organizations. A seasoned industry expert, Bergstein is a frequent speaker, consultant and adjunct professor, helping educate professionals and graduate students alike on all things related to digital media and marketing.
HOW IT WORKS
- United Symphonies of America! is a national project aimed at promoting a spirit of inclusion, unity and goodwill by celebrating the social mission of orchestras across the nation.
- Its premiere event—tentatively scheduled to pilot in September 2021—is a first-of-its-kind online “musical montage” designed to showcase a cross-section of the nation’s community symphony orchestras.
- The program is designed to be a fundraising opportunity for each participating orchestra. It’s also designed to educate, entertain and inspire audiences and orchestras, and promote learning from each other.
- The production will feature the participating orchestras’ highest impact events, including what they look and sound like, why they’re successful, and how they connect with their diverse communities. One orchestra will be selected from each state, and participation in this year’s program is free to all participating symphonies.
- We’re looking for archival video that represents one or two of your highest impact events. Please call Jonathan McPhee at 617-817-2312 to discuss and help you decide which of your pieces might best represent your work.
- Participating orchestras should commit by May 31, 2021 (materials due over the following month).
- An online portal to upload high-res video, audio, photos, and other information will be provided.
- This will be web-streamed, available to anyone with a modern browser on desktop and/or mobile devices.
- The success of the program hinges on the ability to publicize this across the USA. Your active participation is necessary. We do not expect you to provide us with your lists, however, we respectfully request a commitment from you to publicize the event through your own membership and fundraising channels. To make communicating with your various constituents easy, we will provide you with editable promotional material, including press releases, artwork, links to our website, etc. You can simply fill in your information and send it out.
- Opportunity to participate in an historic national promotion! No costs, no catch!
- Opportunity to raise funds! As part of the initiative, Steven Biondolillo will be accessible to discuss the many easy-to-implement ways your participation can increase unrestricted revenue! He can be reached at 781-254-0044.
- Opportunity to tell your story to the nation, using your own archival footage and promotional language!
- Opportunity to create a “rallying point” capable of galvanizing diverse participation and support in your community and state.
- Opportunity to represent your state and shine the spotlight on your orchestra. You were referred to us, and it’s our privilege to have you on board!
- All funds that you raise go directly to your organization through your own channels, e.g., donation pages, mail programs, sponsorship programs, and the like. A hyperlink to your donation page will be available (in the production and on the USA! Website) to visitors from around the nation interested in your orchestra. We will also share a percentage of merchandise purchased by your visitors!
- Net-net: your participation provides you with an evergreen asset that can be used for years both to promote your orchestra and raise funds! “We were in the pilot of a landmark nationwide event…”
Jonathan McPhee will host this program. He will weave together the stories about each orchestra’s highest-impact musical event(s), showcasing your role within your community. We prefer using previously-recorded/archival video clips, thereby avoiding producing new material during COVID: Opportunity to participate in an historic national promotion! No costs, no catch!
- Provide us with two one-minute archival video clips of your event(s) with hi-res audio and video (we’re asking you to submit two clips, but only one will be used).
- High-def, high-res files are preferred. The preferred specification for content is 1080p at 30 frames per second. The precise size in pixels is 1920 pixels wide x 1080 pixels high. The frame rate is 30P (progressive). The videos can be saved using H.264 (MP4 compression). The preferred bit rate is 18 MBPS (Megabytes per second). Quicktime files can be accepted, as well. (At this time, please do not save as HVEC / H.265). Please call Alan Bergstein with any questions or concerns: 781-718-2322. OR…
- If you don’t have hi-res video, you can submit high-quality audio and photos from a single event. Submit the entire piece, and we will pull up to a minute of music to match the photos. Submit at least 15 photos.
- The story – tell us why this is your orchestra’s highest impact event.
- Many CBA’s have at least a “1 minute provision” to use material for marketing purposes, and the IMA allows 5 minutes under the XVII. DOCUMENTARIES, CLIP PROGRAMS, COMPILATIONS clause
- Publishers often have similar provisions for works not in the public domain.
- Credit will be given to all local Unions and Publishers for supporting this online event.
- Click through to link to the USA! online portal to help you organize your video, audio, photos, and other information.
A wide variety of programs are suitable for inclusion in the project. Some examples of still images and out-takes from videos include:
- Annual concert with a large and diverse crowd that is a community event – like July 4th Pops
- A collaboration with another organization that widens the symphony’s audience – like Nutcracker with the local ballet company
- A competition sponsored by the orchestra that attracts a wide range of competitors, composers, and press
- An Educational program for school children that shows the diversity of student population
- Spotlight a program by an orchestra – like an El Sistema, or Project STEP program where the symphony partners with a program that teaches music to underserved students.
- A commissioning project
- A special series that the orchestra wants to highlight that broadens the attending audience
- A collaboration with another organization in the region that broadens the audience members – like collaboration with the Historical Society, Art Gallery, Museum, University, etc.
- Something that brings in more people or elevates the profile of the orchestra beyond the normal subscription series concerts.
- It could be new initiatives regarding orchestra personnel or highlighted activities by orchestra personnel that elevate the visibility of the orchestra within the community.
Please phone Jonathan McPhee at (617) 817-2312 with any questions on what to submit.
Jonathan McPhee 617-817-2312 JMcPhee@UnitedSymphonies.com
Steven Biondolillo 781-254-0044 sbiondolillo@UnitedSymphonies.com
Alan Bergstein 781-718-2322 alanb@UnitedSymphonies.com
United Symphonies of America! and all its graphic representations are trademarks of United Symphonies of America! LLC.
Member, League of American Orchestras.