The TMA salutes all of our members who were nominated for a JUNO Award this year and offers our congratulations to those who won.

This year Local 149 members took home awards in the following categories:

Country Album of The Year

“A Place Called Love” – Johnny Reid

Traditional Jazz Album of the Year

“Our First Set” – John MacLeod’s Rex Hotel Orchestra

Classical Album of the Year: Solo or Chamber Ensemble

“Beethoven: Piano Trios Op. 70 No. 1, Ghost & No. 2: Op 11” – Gryphon Trio

Recording Package of the Year

“Forgiveness Rock Record Vinyl Box Set” – Broken Social Scene

Music DVD of the Year

“Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage” – RUSH

Jim Cuddy

When Jim Cuddy got his first guitar at the age of ten, the first song he learned was Gordon Lightfoot’s “That’s What You Get For Loving Me.” Today, twentyfive years after the formation of Blue Rodeo, Jim is respected as one of Canada’s best songwriters. He received multiple Juno award nominations this year for his third solo album, Skyscraper Soul. His voice, always a voluptuous instrument, has never sounded better, and Cuddy proves once again that his songwriting ranks with the best Canada has to offer. This year, The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) inducted Jim into the Canadian Music Hall Of Fame. He also appears on this year’s CBC “Top 50 Artists” chart.

Jim has long been a champion for music education. He has enthusiastically supported MusiCounts as a participant in Band Aid Grant celebrations at local schools, and represented MusiCounts at fundraising events. He is a driving force behind the annual JUNO Cup, the hockey game pitting rockers against NHL greats, that has become a highlight of JUNO week.
This year, Jim has been named as a MusiCounts Ambassador. The personal passion and enthusiasm of an ambassador can powerfully convey the message of MusiCounts to increase
the understanding and awareness of the importance of music education in Canada. The proceeds from the JUNO Cup go to MusiCounts initiatives.

“Jim Cuddy has been a long-time friend and supporter of MusiCounts. His dedication and passion to help spread the word about the work that MusiCounts does is remarkable,” said Melanie Berry, President and CEO of CARAS/The JUNO Awards & MusiCounts.

“Jim’s strength as a pillar of the Canadian music industry and MusiCounts is clear through events like JUNO Cup. MusiCounts is honoured that Jim has accepted the title of Ambassador.” Toronto Musicians’ Association is proud to name Jim Cuddy our 2011 Musician of the Year.

Tariff of Fees

TMA149 is happy to announce that, after being approved at our spring Annual General Meeting, effective September 5, 2017, a new Tariff of Fees will apply to all live engagements in our local, not covered under a TMA149 negotiated agreement. A big thanks to the whole Board of Directors of TMA149, especially Andy Morris, Richard Sandals, Paul Spurgeon and Steve Mosher who led the development of the new tariff. Please get in touch with us if you have any questions.

Members please log-in then you may click on the Tariff Cover below to View and Download the 2017-2021 TMA Tariff of Fees:

Larnell Lewis

LARNELL LEWIS is a GRAMMY Award winning musician, composer, producer, and educator. A Toronto native, Larnell has quickly established himself as one of the most diverse and in-demand drummers currently on the music scene. Along with his long-standing position behind the drums in Snarky Puppy, Larnell has led many highly successful groups of his own and toured the globe with some of the most well known names in music, including Etienne Charles, Gregory Porter, Benny Golson, Lalah Hathaway, John Scofield, Pat Metheny, Lisa Fisher, Kurt Elling, Gary Burton, and more. Larnell’s immense talent, fierce creativity, and continually evolving musical style is what has kept him at the top of the list as a musical collaborator for artists across the globe. While just in his second year of college, Larnell was recognized by JUNO award-winner Jully Black and acclaimed vocalist Matt Dusk, who took him out on his first national tour. Since then, Larnell continued to climb his way up the ladder, performing in various capacities with the Humber College Studio Jazz Ensemble. After his time at Humber, he found himself spending time both on the road, the big and small screens, and in-studio with some of Canada’s most celebrated artists, including Laila Biali, Molly Johnson O.C., Divine Brown, Colleen Allen, Elizabeth Shepherd, Johnny Reid, Kellylee Evans, and David Clayton-Thomas. Among his many accolades, including the 2004 Oscar Peterson Award for Outstanding Achievement in Music (Humber College), Larnell was named as the fourth recipient of the Toronto Arts Foundation’s “Emerging Jazz Award” (2017), which is a $10,000 cash prize intended to support the creation of a project that features original compositions from each recipient. Says Larnell; “As a creative person you have a lot of dreams of things you would like to do, and finances often stop them. I often dream and dream big. An award like this makes those dreams possible.” Larnell’s highly anticipated debut album “In The Moment” was released in June 2018, and featured ten original compositions in a variety of musical styles. When discussing the title track of the album, Larnell says that “For me, what that song represents is staying locked in the moment, running the course of life and not getting too distracted with small things or letting big things tear you down. It’s really about staying in the moment and absorbing the beauty.” While certain tracks on the album (such as “Beignets” or “No Access?”) really showcase Larnell’s jazz chops, “In The Moment” also heavily taps into his Caribbean background and deeply personal relationship with Gospel music, growing up the son of a Musical Director in a Pentecostal church. There are few musicians who take you on the musical journey that Larnell has embarked on, and the ways in which he tells a story are unlike that of any musician of this generation. In a year full of exciting performances including the North Sea Jazz Festival with Snarky Puppy and the Metropole Orkest, the 2nd annual GroundUP Music Festival with Joshua Redman, Lionel Loueke, and Michael League, Larnell also made his debut at Carnegie Hall with Snarky Puppy and guests David Crosby, Laura Mvula, Chris Thile, and Fatoumata Diawara. Larnell’s vast talents not just as a musician but as a producer also landed him the opportunity to act as Musical Director for a performance during the Toronto International Film Festival’s premiere of the critically-acclaimed documentary of Quincy Jones, “QUINCY”, (directed by Rashida Jones & Al Hicks), where he led performances from the likes of Yebba Smith, Mark Ronson, and Chaka Khan. Larnell’s talents can be seen worldwide via his various social media platforms, which have a combined total of over 100,000 followers. His reach to fans and musicians of all generations is proof that he not only possesses undeniable talent, but a spirit unlike any other that excites, inspires, and encourages music fans of all ages to further explore their musical tastes and the follow him on the road he has paved for himself

Bernie Senensky

Bernie Senesky

With a successful career spanning 50 years, it is not possible to capture everything Bernie has done. Nonetheless, the following will serve to convey some of the highlights of his illustrious and ongoing career.

PERFORMANCES

Touring

  • The Moe Koffman Quintet, multiple tours during the 1980s and 1990s throughout Canada, the USA (including the Monterey Jazz Festival), Switzerland (including the Montreaux Jazz Festival), England (including the Bracknell Jazz Festival), Australia, Brazil, Venezuela and Peru
  • Bowfire, Canada, USA, Mexico, Europe and the Far East, 2000 to 2015
  • Stefan Bauer/ Organic Ear Food, Germany, 2016 and 2018
  • Dave Young Quartet, Mexico and Chile, 2003 and 2005
  • The Galaxy Trio, USA and Canada, 2000 to 2003
  • Blood, Sweat & Tears, USA, 2008
  • Duke’s Best (featuring Jake Hanna), Germany, Switzerland and Austria, 1994
  • The Buddy DeFranco Quartet, Japan, 1991
  • (i) Buddy DeFranco, (ii) Herbie Mann and (iii) Moe Koffman, Germany, 1990
  • The Terry Gibbs Quartet, Norway, 1989
  • Peter Appleyard, England, Switzerland and Ireland, 1983

Freelancing

As well as performing with his own groups, many well-known artists have sought out Bernie in his capacity as a first-call accompanist in the Canadian club and concert scenes. In order to provide a sense of this, here is a listing of just some of the musicians with whom he has performed (and, in many instances, recorded as well) over the past several decades:

Saxophonists/Clarinetists: Art Pepper, Buddy DeFranco, Phil Woods, Al Cohn, Zoot Sims, Sonny Stitt, Ravi Coltrane, Scott Hamilton, Pepper Adams, James Moody, Don Menza, Johnny Griffin, Frank Morgan, George Coleman, Eric Alexander, Nick Brignola, Pharoah Sanders, Gary Bartz, Clifford Jordan, Chris Potter, Lew Tabackin, Dave Liebman, Bobby Watson, Miguel Zenon, Sonny Fortune, Junior Cook, Harry Allen, Donald Harrison, Charles McPherson, Dan Faulk, Bob Mover, John Tank, Eugene Amaro, Mike Murley, Kirk McDonald, Pat LaBarbera, P. J. Perry, Alex Dean, Phil Dwyer, Bob Brough, Shawn Nykwist, Perry White, Jake, Koffman, Grant Stewart, Ryan Oliver

Trumpeters: Dizzy Gillespie, Art Farmer, Chet Baker, Maynard Ferguson, Clark Terry, Guido Basso, Kenny Wheeler, Randy Brecker, Blue Mitchell, Red Rodney, Sam Noto, Terrence Blanchard, Lew Soloff, Tom Harrell, Warren Vache, Jack Sheldon, Eddie Henderson, Donald Byrd, Jon Faddis, Pete Candoli, Herb Spanier, Fred Stone, John Macleod, Brian O’Kane, Steve McDade, Dave Dunlop, Kevin Turcotte, Kevin Dean, Mike Malone, Brian Chahley

Trombonists: Rob McConnell, Slide Hampton, Al Grey, Bill Watrous, Wycliffe Gordon, Russ Little, Terry Promane, William Carn

Guitarists: Ed Bickert, Lenny Breau, Sonny Greenwich, Reg Schwager, Lorne Lofsky, Ted Quinlan, Rob Pilch, Peter Leitch, Cornell Dupree, Barney Kessel, Larry Coryell, Joe Pass, Herb Ellis, Bucky Pizzarelli, Joe Cohn, Tisziji Munoz, Jake Langley, Roddy Ellias, Lucian Gray, Ben Bishop, Nathan Hiltz, Andy Scott, Joey Goldstein

Bassists: Dave Young, Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen, Eugene Wright, Cecil McBee, Neil Swainson, Slam Stewart, Major Holley, Dennis Irwin, Ray Drummond, Keter Betts, Harvie Swartz, Rufus Reid, Eddie Gomez, Gene Perla, Todd Coolman, Don Pate, Michel Donato, Steve Wallace, Jim Vivian, Don Thompson, Kieran Overs, Joel Quarrington, Jodi Proznik, Andrew Downing, Pat Collins, Paul Novotny

Drummers: Art Blakey, Elvin Jones, Billy Cobham, Louis Bellson, Mel Lewis, Bob Moses, Marty Morell, Terry Clarke, Claude Ranger, Jerry Fuller, Don Alias, Rashied Ali, Jake Hanna, Marvin “Smitty” Smith, Joe Farnsworth, Akira Tana, Gerry Gibbs, Andre White, Brian Barlow, Norm Marshall Villeneuve, Barry Elmes, Morgan Childs, Barry Romberg, Ethan Ardelli, Archie Alleyne, Anthony Michelli

Vibists: Gary Burton, Terry Gibbs, Peter Appleyard, Don Thompson, Paul Hoffert, Stefan Bauer

Flutists: Moe Koffman, James Galway, Herbie Mann, Bill McBirnie

Violinists: Lenny Solomon, Drew Jureka, Lara St. John, Moshe Hammer

Vocalists: Joe Williams, Mark Murphy, Salome Bey, Abbey Lincoln, Sheila Jordan, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Anne-Marie Moss, Ernestine Anderson, Dakota Staton, Bobby Vinton, Charles Di Raimondo, Don Francks, Tommy Ambrose, Michael Dunston, John Alcorn, Arlene Smith, Aura Rully, Maureen Kennedy, Jocelyn Barth, Ori Dagan, Lynn MacDonald, Michele Mele, Gloria Loring, Ginette Reno, Catherine McKinnon, Laura Hubert, Heather Bambrick, Maxine Sullivan, Paula Shear,

Established Groups: Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers, The Elvin Jones Quartet, The Maynard Ferguson Orchestra, The Moe Koffman Quintet, Rob McConnell & The Boss Brass, The Randy Brecker/Billy Cobham Quartet, The Herbie Mann/Al Grey All-Star Septet

Piano Duets: Oscar Peterson, Marian McPartland, Paul Hoffert, Robi Botos

OTHER PERFORMANCE HIGHLIGHTS

  1. Bernie had the unusual distinction of performing on three separate occasions in the span of less than one year (2014-1015) at Canada’s world-renowned venue, Koerner Hall, in what were highly contrasting formats; (i) with Guido Basso as part of a Boss Brass Tribute, (ii) with Sir James Galway (and Bill McBirnie) as part of the 2014-2015 Opening Season Gala Concert and (iii) in Pianopalooza as a featured pianist. This prompted Executive Director, Mervon Mehta, to convey his personal and written congratulations to Bernie regarding this exceptional and noteworthy achievement.
  2. Bernie was duly honoured as a featured Canadian pianist on Marian McPartland’s renowned NPR series in the USA, “Piano Jazz”, in 1991.
  3. Bernie was the only Canadian ever to make a special guest appearance on the CTV national TV series, “Oscar Peterson Presents”, in 1975.
  4. Both alto saxophone legend, Art Pepper, and world-renowned drummer, Art Blakey (leader of The Jazz Messengers), were so impressed with Bernie’s work when he performed with them in Canada that both of them extended direct invitations to him to join their bands in the USA (though, in both instances, Bernie chose to remain in Canada).
  5. The Moe Koffman Tribute Band (which Bernie established in 2003) has been giving concerts throughout the province of Ontario for the past 15 years, always featuring alumni of the Moe Koffman Quintet (except for Bill McBirnie on flute and Jake Koffman—Moe’s grandson—on alto saxophone).

REACTIONS OF MUSICIANS & THE PRESS

  • Bill Evans: “I could listen to him play all day.”
  • Elvin Jones: “One of the finest pianists I have worked with in my career.”
  • Oscar Peterson: “Bernie is one of my favourite local pianists and I really can’t understand why he hasn’t become better known.”
  • Oliver Jones: “[O]ne of my favourite Canadian artists and colleagues, Bernie Senensky,…a staple force on the Canadian jazz scene and very well respected in the music world for years…[A] brilliant and talented world-class pianist.”
  • Buddy DeFranco: “The best of the best!”
  • Mark Miller: “’Bernie’s tops as Dizzy bops’…Senensky’s solos throughout were voracious…wholly dazzling improvisations that covered the waterfront of style and technique…Senensky was there, every step of the way, pushing everyone to impressive heights.”
  • Boris Brott: “It is always a great privilege to have our festival associated with artists of your stature.”
  • Donald Harrison: “You have one of the best jazz piano players, anywhere, right here in your midst—Bernie Senensky!”
  • Morley Walker: “In a review of a Moe Koffman Quintet concert in Adelaide, Australia, Senensky was singled out as ‘an artist of world stature’”
  • Eric Snider: “…[A] jazz talent to be reckoned with. Like Chick Corea, he is one of the rare jazz performers to weld acoustic and electric forms easily and tastefully…very individualistic and unique…”
  • Lois Moody: “Pianist and composer Senensky rates as one of the most original and melodic writers in Canadian music and could make his mark anywhere. Music of durable interest and value, expertly performed.”
  • Owen Cordle: “He is not merely a stylist but a master of many styles”

DISCOGRAPHY

As Leader (complete)

  • Invitation, 2011, (PM)
  • Homeland, 2000, (Timeless)
  • The Chalet Sessions, 1998, (Unity)
  • Rhapsody, 1996, (Timeless)
  • New Horizons, 1994, (Timeless)
  • Wheel Within A Wheel, 1993, (Timeless)
  • Re: Action, 1991, (Unity)
  • Fun & Games, 1989, (Unity)
  • Friday The 14th, 1987, (Unity)
  • Free Spirit, 1981, (PM)
  • New Life, 1976, (PM)

As Sideman (partial)

  • Tisziji Muñoz, Space of Fire, 2015, (Anami Music)
  • The Bill McBirnie Trio, Find Your Place, 2014, (Extreme Flute)
  • Organic, Live at Joe Mama’s, 2013, (Organic)
  • Bowfire, Live In Concert, 2011, (Frostbyte)
  • Bowfire, Holiday Heart Strings, 2010, (Frostbyte)
  • Ori Dagan, S’Cat Got My Tongue, 2010, (ScatCat Records)
  • Del Dako, My New Hat, 2007, (Dako Music)
  • Ryan Oliver, Convergence 2007, (Art of Life)
  • Michel Berube, This Christmas, 2006, (Universal Music)
  • Michele Mele, Feel, 2006, (Michele Mele)
  • The Bill McBirnie Duo/Quartet, Paco Paco, 2006, (Extreme Flute)
  • The Andrew Scott Quartet, This One’s For Barney, 2004, (Sackville)
  • Bowfire, Bowfire, 2003, (Marquis Classics/EMI)
  • Tisziji Munoz, Sky Worlds: Heaven Born, 2002, (Anami Music)
  • Aura, I Found Love Again, 2001, (Electrecord)
  • Tony Quarrington, One Bright Morning, 2000, (Cordova Bay)
  • Arlene Smith, Until Today, 2000, (Fusion III)
  • The Galaxy Trio, The Galaxy Trio, 1999, (Marquis Classics/EMI)
  • Tisziji Munoz, Mountain Peak, 1998, (Anami Music)
  • The Art Pepper Quartet, Live In Toronto, 1998, (NOCD)
  • Del Dako, Vindaloo, 1998, (MXR)
  • Tisziji Munoz, Spirit World, 1997, (Anami Music)
  • Stefan Bauer, Coast to Coast, 1997, (Igmod)
  • The Moe Koffman Quintet, Devil’s Brew, 1996, (Duke Street)
  • Compilation, From The Heart—A Tribute To Oscar Peterson, 1995, (Radioland)
  • The Moe Koffman Quintet, Plays, 1990, (Duke Street)
  • The Moe Koffman Quintet (with Dizzy Gillespie), Oop Pop A Da, 1988, (Duke Street)
  • Tisziji Munoz, Visiting This Planet, 1988, (Anami Music)
  • The Moe Koffman Quintet, Moe-Mentum, 1987, (Duke Street)
  • The Moe Koffman Quintet, One Moe Time, 1986, (Duke Street)
  • The Moe Koffman Quintet, Live At The Science Centre, 1986, (Jazz.FM91)
  • Peter Appleyard, Prelude To A Kiss, 1982, (RCA)
  • Joe Coughlin, Joe Coughlin, 1981, (JC)
  • Tisziji Munoz, Rendezvous With Now, 1979, (Anami Music)
  • Peter Appleyard, Peter Appleyard Presents, 1977, (Capitol/EMI)
  • Ed Bickert/Don Thompson/Doug Riley/Pat LaBarbera/Bernie Senensky, From Canada With Love, 1976, (PM)
  • Eugene Amaro, Twilight Time, 1975, (United Artists)
  • Salome Bey, Salome Bey, 1970, (Quality)

AWARDS & HONOURS

  • Juno Nominee
  • Best Traditional Jazz Album, New Horizons, 2000
  • Best Mainstream Jazz Album, Wheel Within A Wheel, 1994
  • Best Jazz Album, Friday The 14th, 1990
  • Jazz Report Awards Winner
  • Best Jazz Pianist, 1999
  • Best Jazz Pianist, 1995
  • SOCAN
  • Best Jazz Composition (“Blues For Clifford”), 1999

A letter from Bill McBirnie regarding Bernie Senensky

Let me begin by saying, it is impossible to capture everything Bernie has done after an illustrious career spanning some 50 years. Suffice it to say, Bernie has never failed to distinguish himself, as well as the musicians he has played with, on both the national and international fronts. So it is easiest for me to confine myself to my own experience with Bernie.

When I first moved to Toronto in 1972, I would often be in the clubs where Bernie was a formidable and ubiquitous presence. I can still remember, vividly, the very first time I ever saw him which was at the Global Village accompanying vocalist, Salome Bey. I was completely knocked out, and he has been an inspiration to me ever since.

Of course, Bernie was Moe Koffman’s keyboard player for close to 20 years (and, once again, I am at pains to point out that this is merely one facet of his career). So I would hear both of them regularly at George’s Spaghetti House throughout the 70s (though I was nothing more than an adoring and anonymous fan).

In 2003, Bernie established the Moe Koffman Tribute Band, and I was shocked when he recruited me to serve as the flute player (which was certainly a privilege and, if truth be told, an intimidating one at that). Anyway, when people started to ask me what it was like for me to play with Bernie, I would say, “Well, the first thing I learned is I that have to be able to play fast; the second thing I learned is that I have to be able to play even faster; and the third thing I learned is that I have to be able to play even faster yet!”

All kidding aside, being in the Moe Koffman Tribute Band gave rise to my working with Bernie in other situations, and then segued into recording with him. In fact, Bernie has graced three of my own albums (Paco Paco and The Silent Wish on piano, and Find Your Place on the Hammond B3). In each instance, he succeeded in making me sound a whole lot better than I did before. (…You can read that sentence again, if you like…)

Anyway, after so many years of working with Bernie, he never ceases to amaze me because, so often on a gig, he comes up with things I’ve never heard him play before.

Of course, Bernie and I have performed many of his compositions as well, amongst which is “Paco Paco” (a perennial favourite, not to mention a perennial challenge). Once when I was leader on the gig, I asked Bernie on stage where he got the name, Paco Paco”. Both the audience and I were surprised to learn that he actually wrote it for the son of drummer Marty Morrell (whose name is Paco) and that, because the tune was originally written for two flutes, Bernie decided to call it…“Paco Paco”…He then proceeded to regale us with Moe’s conviction that, “Bernie wrote this tune for the day when musicians would get paid by the note!”

This is but a small—and quite personal—fragment of Bernie’s career. However, it should serve to underscore what I think everyone will agree is a well-deserved, fitting—and perhaps even long overdue—honour.

Bill McBirnie

Russell Harbenberger

Russell Hartenberger’s performance history begins with the Oklahoma City Symphony in 1960. The ensembles he has played with include the United States Air Force Band, The New Haven Symphony Orchestra, The Paul Winter Consort and the Canadian Opera Orchestra. His longest performing tenures have been with two of the most important musical ensembles in North America; the Steve Reich Ensemble and the percussion group NEXUS. Both of these groups were formed in 1971, and Russell has been a continuous member of both from their inception until today. Being involved directly with Steve Reich’s music from the earliest pieces has given him a unique position from which his recent publication “Performance Practice in the Music of Steve Reich” (Cambridge University Press, 2016) was written. This insiders’ look at performance issues in Mr. Reich’s music has quickly become an indispensable tool for musicians performing this music. His countless performances and recordings with The Steve Reich Ensemble are staples. This ensemble won a Grammy in 1998 for the recording of Music for 18 Musicians. NEXUS, also formed in 1971, has literally reshaped percussion music over the last 5 decades. Russell, as a founding member of this Toronto-based ensemble, has toured the world with the group. NEXUS has led the charge for bringing percussion music to concert halls and university music curriculums the world over. Described as “the high priests of the percussion world” by the New York Times, the ensemble has been at the forefront of the percussion world for decades. John Wyre (former timpanist with the Toronto Symphony and member of NEXUS) described Russell as “the Rock of Gibraltar” in NEXUS. His calm, solid musicianship has always been at the core of NEXUS as an ensemble. Russell also has a significant list of compositions he has penned. Upon his recent retirement from the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music, this aspect of Russell’s musical life has been ramped up even further with several large scale works of note. His most recent work, Requiem for Percussion and Voices, is an hour long, multiple movement piece currently in production. He has past compositions that have made their way into the modern percussion ensemble repertoire worldwide. He and NEXUS created the score for the full-length documentary “The Man Who Skied Down Everest”, which won an Academy Award for its’ soundtrack in 1978. His arrangements can be found on several NEXUS recordings and are performed frequently world-wide. In addition to all of his performing and composing accomplishments, Mr. Hartenberger has just recently completed a significant career as a music educator. His teaching career began in 1962 and ended with his recent appointment as Professor Emeritus at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music. His influences on his students has led them into teaching positions throughout Canada, the United States, Europe and Asia. Former students have also landed significant playing positions in major orchestras the world over, and in some of the foremost musical ensembles globally. In brief, Russell’s career is extensive and far-reaching. His recent publications on Cambridge University Press, his extensive discography and concert experience, his 2017 Leonardo da Vinci World Award of Arts award, presented to him by The World Cultural Council and his former students long lists of successes attests to a musical life well done! It is with great pleasure that the Toronto Musicians’ Association honours Russell Hartenberger with the Lifetime Achievement Award!

Russell Hartenberger; Percussionist, Composer, Educator From Russell: “I moved to Toronto in 1974 and joined the TMA in my first few weeks in town. I first joined the AFofM as a member of the Oklahoma City local in 1960. Subsequently, I was a member of AFofM locals in Philadelphia, New Haven and New York City. We [NEXUS] certainly could not have survived without the understanding and support of the Toronto Musicians’ Association who, from the inception of the group, recognized the importance of the ensemble and paved the way for our recognition as a significant Canadian cultural organization”

Respect

TMA149 Executive Director Michael Adam Murray represented the CFM on the National Steering committee and TMA149 has signed onto the code.

The Cultural Human Resources Council’s Respectful Workplaces in the Arts (RWA) initiative releases a National Code of Conduct for the Performing Arts with a public launch at ArtsCourt on September 27, 2019.

Today under the banner of Respectful Workplaces in the Arts (RWA), the Cultural Human Resources Council (CHRC) released a National Code of Conduct for the Performing Arts http://respectfulartsworkplaces.ca/code-of-conduct. This Code of Conduct has been in development since early 2018 with the participation of the performing arts community across the country. At the launch event, the Great Canadian Theatre Company, the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, the Ottawa Dance Directive and l’Association des théâtres francophones du Canada formally signed onto the Code, adding their names to the many dozens who have already signed, and inviting all performing arts organizations to do the same. For a full list of current signatories, please visit http://respectfulartsworkplaces.ca/code-of-conduct

The National Code of Conduct for the Performing Arts is a set of values, expectations and voluntary commitments developed by stakeholders in the performing arts. Each signatory is responsible for upholding its commitments under the Code. Each is encouraged to discuss it internally and embrace it as a foundational value document or adapt it to their own environments, to accompany and support their internal policies and legislated requirements relating to harassment.

In the words of CHRC Chair, Richard Hornsby: “CHRC is very proud to present this National Code of Conduct for the Performing Arts to Canadians, on behalf of the performing arts community across the country. We have led the process, but the words and spirit of this code are from the artists, cultural works and employers in the performing arts themselves. It has been a long process of consultation, write and rewrite, but the end result stands as a document to guide and inspire artists, cultural workers and employers throughout the performing arts – and perhaps to develop their own codes in their own organizations.

We are very grateful for the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts and the Department of Canadian Heritage which has made this and the many other initiatives under the RWA banner possible.”

For a history of the development of the Code or to become a signatory the Code, see http://respectfulartsworkplaces.ca/coordinating-committee-and-working-groups)

For more information about Respectful Workplaces in the Arts , visit www.respectfulartsworkplaces.ca.

#RespectInAction

About the Cultural Human Resources Council

The Cultural Human Resources Council (CHRC) represents the broad cultural sector including the Live Performing Arts, Visual Arts and Crafts, Writing and Publishing, Music and Sound Recording, Film and Broadcasting, Digital Media, and Heritage. It addresses HR issues in the sector such as the training and career development needs of employers and cultural workers including artists, technical staff, administrators, managers and all others engaged professionally in the sector. As part of the Respectful Workplaces in the Arts initiative, CHRC has created and gathered valuable resources and tools to help deal with and prevent harassment; and is presently exploring a centralized reporting mechanism for victims of harassment, as well as support systems for employers who have to launch an investigation into harassment in the workplace. CHRC is also overseeing the development and delivery of workshops on Maintaining Respectful Workplaces across the sector and the country.

For more information about CHRC and its extensive programs, please visit our website www.culturalhrc.ca

TSO Logo

Affiliate Composer Application
TORONTO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Sir Andrew Davis, Interim Music Director

APPLICATION INFORMATION:

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) is inviting applications for the position of Affiliate Composer, to begin during the 2018-19 season. The Affiliate Composer will work closely with Interim Music Director Sir Andrew Davis, TSO Composer Advisor Gary Kulesha, the artistic staff, and the musicians of the TSO. This two-year position includes opportunities to write works for the full orchestra, to interact with international visiting composers and to participate in the TSO’s extensive education programs. Critical training in program planning, orchestra operations, marketing, public relations, education, and development activities will be provided to the Affiliate Composer to enhance understanding of a professional orchestra. The Affiliate Composer will also have a role in promoting and representing the work of the TSO. In addition to involvement with the selection and programming of contemporary music, the Affiliate Composer will also have a role in promoting and advocating for the creation and performance of Canadian and contemporary music. While no age requirement is mandated, it is expected that this position will be filled by an emerging composer who has already demonstrated substantial accomplishment in the Canadian orchestral world.

For detailed information and history of the TSO visit: https://www.tso.ca/orchestra

QUALIFICATIONS / REQUIREMENTS:

  • All applicants for the position of TSO Affiliate Composer must be Canadian citizens or Permanent Residents.
  • Although full-time residency in Toronto is not required, it is expected that the Affiliate Composer be present inToronto on a regular basis for committee meetings and for all weeks in which contemporary works are performed plus for selected Educational and Community Engagement programs.
  • Candidates should have completed their training.
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability and desire to connect with audiences to speak for the music and the orchestra are expected.
  • Candidates should have experience working with professional orchestras; a working knowledge of Canadian and international contemporary orchestral repertoire is essential.

HOW TO APPLY:

Visit https://www.tso.ca/AffiliateComposer to submit your application.

Applications must include:

  • Letter of interest (maximum one page) addressed to: Toronto Symphony Orchestra
  • Affiliate Composer Search Committee
  • Full curriculum vitae (maximum 5 pages) which includes:
    • citizenship
    • contact information
    • educational background
    • three professional references with contact information
    • A complete list of compositions, including information about past and further performances of works plus any discography or publications (if applicable)
  • 2 scores with recordings
  • Applications can submitted online via the following link: https://www.dropbox.com/request/7fMxOiiUbADZckLLrNxa or mailed to the following address: Toronto Symphony Orchestra at 145 Wellington Street, Suite 500, Toronto, ON M5J 1H8.

*All written application materials must be submitted in one single file. Only PDF documents will be accepted.

NOTE: The search committee will receive all applications for the position in confidence.

Audition process:

  • Applications must be submitted no later than: Monday, April 9, 2018 at 5pm EST
  • The search committee will include Sir Andrew Davis (TSO Interim Artistic Director), Gary Kulesha (TSO Composer Advisor), musician representatives of the TSO and TSO staff.
  • Live interviews for finalists will take place in Toronto on June 4, 2018.
  • The audition process will include an interview with the search committee and a written exercise.

TERMS:

  • September 17, 2018 through June 30, 2020
  • Compensation will be discussed at the time the position is offered
Toronto Symphony Orchestra

Affiliate Composer Application
TORONTO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Sir Andrew Davis, Interim Music Director

APPLICATION INFORMATION:

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) is inviting applications for the position of Affiliate Composer, to begin during the 2018-19 season. The Affiliate Composer will work closely with Interim Music Director Sir Andrew Davis, TSO Composer Advisor Gary Kulesha, the artistic staff, and the musicians of the TSO. This two-year position includes opportunities to write works for the full orchestra, to interact with international visiting composers and to participate in the TSO’s extensive education programs. Critical training in program planning, orchestra operations, marketing, public relations, education, and development activities will be provided to the Affiliate Composer to enhance understanding of a professional orchestra. The Affiliate Composer will also have a role in promoting and representing the work of the TSO. In addition to involvement with the selection and programming of contemporary music, the Affiliate Composer will also have a role in promoting and advocating for the creation and performance of Canadian and contemporary music. While no age requirement is mandated, it is expected that this position will be filled by an emerging composer who has already demonstrated substantial accomplishment in the Canadian orchestral world.

For detailed information and history of the TSO visit: https://www.tso.ca/orchestra

QUALIFICATIONS / REQUIREMENTS:

  • All applicants for the position of TSO Affiliate Composer must be Canadian citizens or Permanent Residents.
  • Although full-time residency in Toronto is not required, it is expected that the Affiliate Composer be present inToronto on a regular basis for committee meetings and for all weeks in which contemporary works are performed plus for selected Educational and Community Engagement programs.
  • Candidates should have completed their training.
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability and desire to connect with audiences to speak for the music and the orchestra are expected.
  • Candidates should have experience working with professional orchestras; a working knowledge of Canadian and international contemporary orchestral repertoire is essential.

HOW TO APPLY:

Visit https://www.tso.ca/AffiliateComposer to submit your application.

Applications must include:

  • Letter of interest (maximum one page) addressed to: Toronto Symphony Orchestra
  • Affiliate Composer Search Committee
  • Full curriculum vitae (maximum 5 pages) which includes:
    citizenship
    contact information
    educational background
    three professional references with contact information
    a complete list of compositions, including information about past and further performances of works plus any discography or publications (if applicable)
  • 2 scores with recordings
  • Applications can submitted online via the following link: APPLICATIONS CLOSED or mailed to the following address:
    Toronto Symphony Orchestra
    145 Wellington Street, Suite 500,
    Toronto, ON M5J 1H8

*All written application materials must be submitted in one single file. Only PDF documents will be accepted.

NOTE: The search committee will receive all applications for the position in confidence.

Audition process:

  • Applications must be submitted no later than: Monday, April 9, 2018 at 5pm EST
  • The search committee will include Sir Andrew Davis (TSO Interim Artistic Director), Gary Kulesha (TSO Composer Advisor), musician representatives of the TSO and TSO staff.
  • Live interviews for finalists will take place in Toronto on June 4, 2018.
  • The audition process will include an interview with the search committee and a written exercise.

Terms:

  • September 17, 2018 through June 30, 2020
  • Compensation will be discussed at the time the position is offered

AFM Freelance Musicians Division, headed up by tireless dynamo Paul Sharpe, has implemented a new web hosting service for AFM members starting at $19/yr. If you need affordable hosting, with excellent support, visit www.goprohosting.com

Don’t forget to get your free online artist listing at www.gopromusic.com. GoPro working for you.

AFM Freelance Musicians Division, headed up by tireless dynamo Paul Sharpe, has implemented a new web hosting service for AFM members starting at $19/yr. If you need affordable hosting, with excellent support, visit www.goprohosting.com

Don’t forget to get your free online artist listing at www.gopromusic.com. GoPro working for you.

Headed up by tireless dynamo Paul Sharpe, has implemented a new web hosting service for AFM members starting at $19/yr. If you need affordable hosting, with excellent support, visit www.goprohosting.com

Don’t forget to get your free online artist listing at www.gopromusic.com. GoPro working for you.

AFM President Ray Hair visited Toronto with five other members of the International Executive Board to discuss film scoring issues with VP from Canada Al Willaert and the CFM Film Committee comprised of members of locals 145, 149 and 406 as well as joint members of the Screen Composers Guild of Canada. Organizing and contract ideas to increase film and TV scoring work in Canada were discussed and recommendations are expected to flow following the IEB meeting in March 2016.

MEDIA ADVISORY
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

honore@bentley-hall.com

September 21, 2010 | AFM Supports Introduction of Bill to Combat Online Piracy

On Monday, September 20, 2010, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy and senior Republican member Orrin Hatch introduced the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act. This legislation will enable the Department of Justice to shut down “rogue websites” that specialize in providing unauthorized downloads, streaming, or sale of copyrighted content and counterfeit goods.

Music and video piracy costs the United States $16.3 billion annually and 375,000 jobs within the entertainment industry. “This bill is a positive step forward in combating piracy and protecting the copyrights of musicians,” said AFM International President Ray Hair. “The American Federation of Musicians of the U.S. and Canada is pleased to see the Senate taking action to address the serious issue of copyright infringement by these rogue sites, and we look forward to working with the Judiciary Committee as the legislation moves forward.”

ABOUT THE AFM

Founded in 1896, the American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM), AFL-CIO, is the largest organization in the world dedicated to representing the interests of professional musicians. With more than 90,000 members, the AFM represents all types of professional musicians, including those who record music for sound recordings, film scores, videogames, radio, television and commercial announcements, as well as perform music of every genre in every sort of venue from small jazz clubs to symphony orchestra halls to major stadiums. Whether negotiating fair agreements, protecting ownership of recorded music, securing benefits such as health care and pension, or lobbying legislators, the AFM is committed to raising industry standards and placing the professional musician in the foreground of the cultural landscape. www.afm.org

AFM Supports Network “Net” Neutrality by Joining Rock the Net and Internet for Everyone

MEDIA ADVISORY FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Carmen Group – Sabrina Ram
(212) 983-6100
rams@carmengroup.com

The American Federation of Musicians Announces Its Support for Network “Net” Neutrality by Joining Rock the Net and Internet for Everyone

New York, NY – The American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM), in support of the concept of network “net” neutrality, has joined Future of Music Coalition’s Rock the Net campaign and Free Press’ Internet for Everyone initiative.

In the 21st century, the Internet has become a critical method for musicians to distribute their work. Artists of all levels of success use the Internet to get their music to fans, either through iTunes, eMusic, Amazon, YouTube, MySpace or the myriad other websites that allow music to be sold or streamed. The Internet allows music and musicians to flourish and must be kept open and neutral. At the same time, the music that is carried over the Internet must be protected from copyright infringement. These two concepts are not antithetical, and AFM will work to see that both principles are enshrined in legislation and administration policy.

AFM congratulates the Future of Music Coalition and Free Press for their success in advocating for an open Internet and will work with them and the creative community to promote network neutrality while protecting copyrighted content.

ABOUT THE AFM

Founded in 1896, the American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM), AFL-CIO, is the largest organization in the world dedicated to representing the interests of professional musicians. With more than 90,000 members, the AFM represents all types of professional musicians, including those who record music for sound recordings, film scores, videogames, radio, television and commercial announcements, as well as perform music of every genre in every sort of venue from small jazz clubs to symphony orchestra halls to major stadiums. Whether negotiating fair agreements, protecting ownership of recorded music, securing benefits such as health care and pension, or lobbying legislators, the AFM is committed to raising industry standards and placing the professional musician in the foreground of the cultural landscape. www.afm.org

After more than 36 and a half years helping musicians and engagers at TMA, Angella Hamilton is retiring from the TMA’s staff. Most of Angella’s time with the TMA was dedicated to the Theatre and General Live Performance (Miscellaneous) areas and we know many members and engagers who have spent most, or even all, of their careers referring to Angella. Angella’s last day at TMA will be Friday, September 1, 2017. Please join us in offering her a huge congratulations and best wishes in retirement.

After the retirement of Pat Taylor earlier this year and Angella Hamilton’s pending retirement, TMA is thrilled to announce that Rebecca Sinnaeve has been named to the new position of Membership & Contracts Coordinator (MCC). With education in Entertainment Management, Psychology and Computer Science from Windsor University and Trebas Institute, Rebecca has worked at TMA for nearly a decade, focusing on Membership Registration, and before that at the Canadian Federation of Musicians and CMRRA. As an MCC Rebecca will be working in a variety of areas, but will be the primary contact for members and engagers contracting for Commercial Announcements (Jingles) and Theatre. Rebecca will begin this work as soon as an additional Membership & Contracts Coordinator is named. Both now and as we go through staff changes you may refer to our newly laid out Office Directory, which offers multiple staff members to contact in all functional areas of TMA.

Please join us in congratulating and welcoming Rebecca in her new role.

TMA149 Town Hall Meeting

Watch Now

Chat Text:

10:07:54  From Kate Unrau : “However, royalty payments received from work that took place before the period for which a person applies for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit do not count as income during that specific benefit period.”
10:08:41  From Kevin Barrett : I’m joining late.  Will that letter Michael as just walked through be available later for a more careful read?
10:09:27  From Jamie Drake : @Kevin:  that letter is on the TMA website, so it’s available to read later.
10:09:28  From Kevin Barrett : My understanding is also that Royalty Payments do NOT count. Nor does the TAC grant
10:09:39  From Kate Unrau : Under “Income Requirements” in the FAQ, the question “What counts towards the $1,000 in income I can earn?”
10:09:52  From Kate Unrau : The $1,000 includes employment and/or self-employment income. This includes among others: tips you may earn while working; non-eligible dividends; honoraria (e.g., nominal amounts paid to emergency service volunteers); and royalties (e.g., paid to artists).
However, royalty payments received from work that took place before the period for which a person applies for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit do not count as income during that specific benefit period.
Pensions, student loans and bursaries are not employment income and therefore, should not be included in the $1000.
Applications will be verified against tax records to confirm income.
10:10:38  From Kevin Barrett : The Toronto Arts Council tells you, when you get the grant notification, that it doesn’t count toward the $1000 limit.
10:14:02  From Michele Jacot : Is the income pre or post expenses?
10:15:49  From Michael McClennan : CRA site says “Pre-tax”
10:15:53  From Brandon Chui :  I have word from my accountant who said she spoke director to a CRA agent:
1. Is the $1,000 gross or net income: It is gross income.
10:15:55  From Kate Unrau : On the FAQ:
10:15:56  From Kate Unrau : Can someone qualify for CERB if they still have a small amount of income coming into their business account as a sole proprietor to pay some of their business expenses (commercial rent, utility costs, etc.) as long as they are not paying themselves any income from the business?
Yes. To be eligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, you must have stopped working as a result of reasons related to COVID-19 and receive less than $1,000 in employment or self-employment income for at least 14 consecutive days within the initial four-week period for which you apply. For subsequent periods, you cannot receive more than $1,000 in employment or self-employment income for the entire four-week period.
10:22:30  From Norman Engel : Music and Sports will not likely resume in the fall according to Media reports and the Premier
10:22:49  From Jay Boehmer  To  Michael Murray(privately) : YouTube video provided by Chris Birkett is a video of him performing an original song related to Earth Day. (Recently uploaded.)
10:22:50  From Michael Murray : Maggie’s Contact mhopkins@tma149.ca
10:23:19  From Scott Harrison  To  Michael Murray(privately) : The video linked by Chris is a recording of a song [more of a ‘message’, not substantive]
10:23:46  From Chris Birkett : I was talking to Adam Vaughn last night. Apparently there is a limit to funds from the government. So I suggest that we claim a.s.a.p.
10:24:42  From bethanybergman  To  Michael Murray(privately) : Did you address earning up to 1000 but still be eligible for the whole 2000 CERB
10:25:22  From brian : More specifics about rates for streamed concerts and contracts, thanks!
10:25:28  From Ray Dillard  To  Michael Murray(privately) : no evidence
10:27:21  From Mic Dim : What about streamed Concerts for Top 40 acts or even tribute acts?
10:27:32  From Scott Harrison  To  Michael Murray(privately) : I think we lost your audio for a moment there
10:27:58  From Kate Unrau : yes
10:28:00  From Chris Birkett : Yes
10:28:03  From Norman Engel : yes
10:28:10  From Norman Engel : yes
10:29:11  From Norman Engel : sound is cutting out again
10:29:29  From Ray Dillard  To  Michael Murray(privately) : loosing your audio somewhat Michael
10:29:31  From Mic Dim : Sound is muffled and cutting out
10:29:39  From Scott Harrison  To  Michael Murray(privately) : Conifrmed – audio is sketchy
10:29:54  From Chris Birkett : Where’s the sound engineer :)
10:29:56  From Ray Dillard  To  Michael Murray(privately) : bandwidth issue I think when you screen share.
10:29:56  From Mic Dim : Cant’ understand what you’re saying
10:29:58  From Norman Engel  To  Michael Murray(privately) : sound is cutting out
10:30:03  From Kate Unrau : You’re back!
10:30:04  From Mic Dim : OK again
10:30:05  From Jamie Drake : and it’s back
10:30:08  From Ray Dillard  To  Michael Murray(privately) : better
10:30:33  From Chris Birkett : Could you post all the links on this feed ?
10:30:55  From Michael Murray  To  Ray Dillard(privately) : https://tma149.ca/
10:31:09  From Scott Harrison : https://tma149.ca
10:31:09  From Michael Murray  To  Ray Dillard(privately) : https://tma149.ca/2016-01-26-02-37-54/contracts
10:31:15  From Michael Murray : https://tma149.ca/2016-01-26-02-37-54/contracts
10:31:27  From Michael Murray : https://tma149.ca/2016-01-26-02-37-54/contracts/152-limited-pressing-small-scale-sound-recording-agreement-and-letter-of-adherence-1/file
10:31:40  From Michael Murray : https://tma149.ca/2016-01-26-02-37-54/contracts/148-05-federation-canadian-sound-recording-rates-summary-chart-2017-2019-rev-11-27-18/file
10:32:37  From Michael Murray : For full pro audio visual streaming: http://www.cfmusicians.org/uploads/file/CBC_CFM_ENG%20AGR%202019-2023%20PRINTED.pdf
10:32:45  From Kate Unrau : The CRA FAQ has literally been updated during the course of this meeting. Clarity around pre-tax/gross/net income, quoted from FAQ: “Small Business owners can receive income from their business in different ways, including as salary, business income or dividends. In determining their eligibility for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit:
Owners who take a salary from their business should consider their pre-tax salary;
Owners who rely on business income should consider their net pre-tax income (gross income less expenses);
Owners who rely on dividend income should consider this as self-employment income provided it comes from non –eligible dividends (generally, those paid out of corporate income taxed at the small business rate).”
10:33:14  From Chris Birkett : How do we save this chat feed ?
10:34:32  From Kate Unrau : I think the info you provided earlier was correct: If you draw salary, it’s pre-tax salary. If you rely on income, it’s net pre-tax income (gross less expenses).
10:34:42  From Norman Marshall Villeneuve : you can copy and paste any portion of the chat feed to a txt document
10:35:07  From Rosina Kazi : but private message are Also saved
10:35:14  From Ray Dillard  To  Michael Murray(privately) : it does look the same for us
10:35:26  From Rosina Kazi : all of it so just saying
10:35:35  From Ray Dillard  To  Michael Murray(privately) : only your private messages are saved when YOU save the Chat
10:35:37  From Rosina Kazi : Don’t talk shit basically
10:35:58  From Scott Harrison : Please let me reiterate that TMA staff is happy to help members with their contracts (be they media or other)
10:36:07  From Mic Dim : The contract link comes up N/A
10:38:10  From Ray Dillard  To  Michael Murray(privately) : IF YOU LIKE:  Please announce that the TMA is constantly analyzing our budget, updating it as appropriate, and looking forward to the situation as it changes. The Exec and Board feel we are in a solid position going forward, and our recent meetings with our accountants confirm this.
10:38:20  From Mic Dim : So who can do Live Streaming
10:39:26  From Mic Dim : If band is doing other peoples music
10:40:58  From Rosina Kazi : this may have been covered but are Facebook and Instagram paying these licenses?
10:41:17  From Rosina Kazi : They are making so much money
10:42:14  From Corey Gemmell : Does a small number of musicians, ie a small chamber group such as a duo or trio, getting together to perform and live stream constitute violating the government’s social distancing regulations?  Wouldn’t want to go against that.
10:44:39  From Norman Engel : time to play duets at 3 metres!
10:44:45  From Norman Marshall Villeneuve  To  Michael Murray(privately) : Mike, Norman Marshall Villeneuve here. I have to leave the meeting.  Maybe the TMA could send the chat to all members by email?  Just an idea.
Thanks for the opportunity to meet. Nice to see old friends.
Please stay safe. Love and peace to all. Norm
10:45:07  From Ellen Moore : Funds still available (non-music related) for parents with kids grade 7 and under in the public school system.  The previous teacher strike days will be compensated to parents at rates of $25-60/strike day, plus a $200 top-up per child.  Applications close four weeks after the agreement is signed, so time will run out. https://www.iaccess.gov.on.ca/ParentAppWeb/parentapp/index.xhtml
10:46:17  From Michael McClennan : Would an engager be allowed defer gig cancelation payments (to the fall?) so as not to mess up a performer’s CERB status?
10:46:59  From bethanybergman  To  Michael Murray(privately) : bye, have to go teach
10:47:17  From Patrick Jordan : If we live stream and the engager sells access in excess of 1,000 tickets, would that push us to a different agreement from the limited pressing rate?
10:47:54  From lodewijkvos  To  Michael Murray(privately) : Do we have to re-apply to CERB or will we get it automatically next month
10:48:12  From Ray Dillard : reapply
10:48:15  From moonwatt : you have to reapply.
10:48:18  From Ray Dillard : Each month
10:48:21  From Mic Dim : Only apply every 4 weeks
10:48:31  From Ray Dillard : and only on your specific day
10:48:36  From Ray Dillard : or Fri Sat Sun
10:48:37  From Mic Dim : reapply up to 16 weeks
10:48:42  From moonwatt : correct.  birth month.
10:48:46  From Ray Dillard : birth month
10:49:30  From Norman Engel : all the info for applying is on the My Account website through CRA
10:49:52  From brian : I’ve lost income from gigs that were booked so fit the CERB definition, but my major income is teaching university, where I pay EI; have not been able to get a clear answer as to which to apply for?
10:50:02  From Hans J F Preuss : we are in the second period already, so if you applied for the first period you should be reapplying now and then at the start of each subsequent period
10:50:07  From Chris Birkett : How much do we charge for virtual overdubs
10:50:16  From Rosina Kazi : I have to go! But thank you!
10:51:47  From Mic Dim : Everyone should know you need an account sign up at CRA to get CERB https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/e-services/cra-login-services.html
10:51:48  From chrismckhool : Is there any simple boiler plate contractual cancellation language you recommend?
10:51:58  From Scott Harrison : From member: May minors (who would have toured as part of an act) apply for CERB?
10:52:21  From Ray Dillard : If you don’t have access to your CRA account, you can apply via telephone for the CERB.
10:52:36  From Mic Dim : Oh yes Thanks
10:53:32  From brian : Re EI or CERB, you can’t get through to anyone in Gov’t. The EI application is a lot longer. Yes, my university contract ends April and I’ll still be doing some virtual teaching, and I suppose, the advantage of me applying through EI is that allows room for me to make more than 1k per month if I can swing that?
10:54:43  From Michael Murray : Written offers, including offers by email, shall be provided to musicians no later than ninety days prior to the first rehearsal for a production and shall include all proposed fees, dates and hours of engagement.  Offers shall not be rescinded unless the musician does not reply within five business days of the offer.  In the case that the musician absents themselves for an emergency and/or last minute replacement and/or change in performer due to exceptional circumstances, the offer shall be sent as soon as practical. Any replacement of a musician where the musician does not absent themselves but where Engager replaces the musician shall be compensated for two appropriate.
10:55:04  From Ray Dillard : Brian, I believe EI comes before CERB when you are in the EI system, but CERB becomes available IF you run out of your EI coverage.
10:55:05  From Michael Murray : Date of notice of cancellation = $
10:55:44  From Michael Murray : Deposit upon signing of contract and if cancelled at any time keep the deposit
10:56:06  From Mic Dim : What about Force Majeure? Seems everyone is claiming that
10:57:08  From Ray Dillard : There is also no one single Force Majeure clause!!
10:57:23  From Ray Dillard : They are each unique.
10:58:14  From brian : thanks Ray, and I believe it will be the same amount for this period anyhow (2k) unless you’re earning something; theoretically, EI could pay less even though many of us pay into it.
10:58:50  From Ray Dillard : Brian, I presume that is true. I think EI is relative to each indivi
10:58:57  From Ray Dillard : individual contract.
10:59:13  From Kate Unrau : CERB minimum age = 15
10:59:39  From Jamie Drake : As I understand it, the general CRA advice has been that if you’re not sure, you should just apply to CERB.
11:00:01  From Ray Dillard : At this time, I believe the CERB is only available for four months.
11:00:31  From Ray Dillard : Correct, but there might be MANY periods open.
11:02:41  From Ray Dillard : Thanks Michael!!!!
11:03:02  From Kate Unrau : Thanks for all your time and efforts, Michael.
11:03:05  From chrismckhool : thanks!
11:03:09  From Jamie Drake : Thanks to you Michael and all the TMA staff (and various members who’ve added great info)!
11:03:26  From brian : thanks Michael, Brian Katz
11:03:37  From laurafernandez : thank you so much for this!
11:04:05  From Chris Birkett : Good Bye everyone. Stay safe and well. Btw, the chat feed can be saved with the little 3 dot button to the write of the chat box. Chris Birkett
11:04:09  From Mic Dim : Thanks Michael! Much appreciated for everyone time input!
11:04:26  From moonwatt : thanks, Michael, & all TMA staff!  Shelley
11:04:33  From Patrick Jordan : Thanks Michael, and everyone else.
11:04:37  From Mic Dim : does saving chat save all the chat even after it’s been pressed?
11:04:58  From lbart’s iPad : thanks for the updates , Michael ,, appreciated
11:05:04  From Mic Dim : Oh that’s wonderful! Thanks!
11:05:05  From Norman Engel : thanks Michael

In celebration of our 40th Anniversary Season, ORIANA Women’s Choir presents
CANADIAN CHORAL COMPOSITION COMPETITION FOR YOUNG COMPOSERS

The competition provides three $1,000 prizes for compositions in the following categories:

  • one $1,000 prize for a new setting of the text Silent Night
  • one $1,000 prize for a new setting of the text Laudate Dominum
  • one $1,000 prize for a setting of the poem Rubies, by Ralph Waldo Emerson

The winning compositions will be performed by ORIANA Women’s Choir on:

  • Saturday, November 26, 2011: Silent Night
  • Saturday, March 3, 2012: Laudate Dominum
  • Saturday, May 5, 2012: Rubies

Entry deadline: August 1, 2011
Entry fee: $25 per composition
Duration of composition: not exceeding 4 minutes
Type of composition: for SA/SSA/SSAA voices, a cappella or with piano accompaniment

Competition Background

Over the past 15 seasons, under the direction of Artistic Director William Brown, ORIANA Women’s Choir has commissioned and premiered over 60 new choral works by Canadian composers. ORIANA Women’s Choir is extremely proud of this accomplishment. Many of the commissioned composers have had their works published and ORIANA is now able to share these compositions for treble voices with choirs around the world. To celebrate the choir’s 40th Anniversary, we have chosen to focus on the future of choral music in Canada by highlighting the work of up-and-coming Canadian choral composers (30 years of age and under). We introduce this new competition to showcase new Canadian talent, and so that we can continue to publicly perform new compositions during this special 2011–2012 season.

For more information, contact William Brown, Artistic Director: william.brown4@sympatico.ca

Click here to view CFM Pre-Budget Submission Click Here for the CFM Submission to Canadian Heritage

Submission for Federal Pre-Budget Consultation

  • Recommendation 1 (CERB): That the government extend the CERB (Canada Emergency Response Benefit) until at least March 31, 2021, but preferably until all crowd prohibitions have been lifted and government allows live performance venues to reopen.
    OR: That the government extend the CERB (as above) and restrict the extension to entertainment workers.
    AND: That the government extend the CERB (under either of the above scenarios), and increase the $1,000 monthly non-penalized earnings, with a gradual claw-back of benefits, rather than termination of the benefit if the maximum earnings are exceeded.
  • Recommendation 2 (UBI): That the government implement a Universal Basic Income.
  • Recommendation 3 (EI Expansion): That the government expand the Employment Insurance (EI) program to fully include the self-employed, both as contributors and recipients.
  • Recommendation 4 (EI Extension): That the government extend EI Regular Benefits, on a temporary basis, past the maximum claim period by 4-week increments, until such time as government lifts all crowd prohibitions.
  • Recommendation 5 (RRSPs): That the government allow Canadians with Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) accounts to make non-taxable, limited withdrawals and to repay these withdrawals over a defined period.

 

Submission to Canadian Heritage

Both sectors – The CERB was a lifesaver and could be used as an argument for the institution of a Universal Basic Income.  A stable, reliable income is critical to a worker’s ability to create or support the creation of, any artistic endeavor.

 

Film and television is slowly reopening, but is being hindered because no insurer will provide coverage to film and TV producers without a COVID-19 exclusion. We are asking the government to support the CMPA’s (Canadian Media Production Association) proposal to provide a $100-million backstop for COVID-19-related insurance claims. Unlike traditional insurers, the federal government has an incentive to put people back to work and turn those receiving EI/CERB/CRB benefits into productive taxpayers.

We also strongly support the proposal submitted to Canadian Heritage by the MPA-Canada concerning a temporarily enhanced film tax credit, which would create more film jobs for Canadians by attracting increased foreign service production to the country.

 

Live performance will require much more support, and it must be two-pronged, covering both employees and venues/institutions. The $500 million fund from Canadian Heritage was much appreciated and has helped to keep venues from closing their doors permanently, but some of that funding was to be earmarked for arts workers.  We have not seen much evidence that this has happened. Organizations should be required to provide detailed breakdowns of artist fees, demonstrating that they are at least equivalent to the industry-established baselines. As well, support will be needed to insure live performance, once crowds are allowed.

 

Government should also consider:

 

  • Increasing funding to the Canada Council for the Arts and provincial arts bodies to allocate funds to arts organizations to assist them in attracting live audiences by using an organization’s previous years’ ticket sales averages as the eligibility criteria for funding amounts (i.e. providing funding equal to 50% of the average of the previous five years’ ticket sales so that the organization can reduce ticket prices and attract attendees.)
  • Amending the Income Tax Act on a temporary basis so that live performance ticket purchases are treated as charitable donations for tax purposes for 2020 and 2021, and longer if necessary.
  • Devising and implementing federal tax credit incentives for live performance similar to the tax credits that have given rise to record setting levels of film and television production across Canada.
  • Working with stakeholders to design, implement and fund a national marketing campaign aimed at encouraging Canadians to return to the various arts and culture venues as patrons. Funding should also be allocated to provincial and municipal organizations to enable them to design more focused, localized campaigns.
Guido Basso

Guido Basso & Stompin’ Tom Connors

The Toronto Musicians’ Association is proud to recognize Guido Basso’s decades of artistry with the TMA Lifetime Achievement Award and is delighted to acknowledge Life Member Stompin’ Tom Connors with our Lifetime Achievement Award.

GUIDO BASSO

“Guido Basso is quite simply the best damn flugelhorn player in the world.” – Rob McConnell

Guido BassoMontreal-born Guido Basso began playing trumpet at the age of nine. At the age of nineteen, he left Montreal to tour with Vic Damone, followed by three more years touring with Pearl Bailey and Louis Bellson. In 1960, Guido settled in Toronto and quickly became “first call” in the studios and jazz clubs. While still in his early twenties, he was featured as an on-air personality and music director on several popular television programs including Nightcap and Barris & Company, and co-hosted Mallets & Brass with Peter Appleyard. From 1969-71 he was music director of After Noon on CBC radio, and he later led orchestras for the CBC television programs In the Mood and Bandwagon.

As a founding member and featured soloist with Rob McConnell and the Boss Brass, Guido performed with The Singers Unlimited, Phil Woods, Mel Torme and The Hi Lo’s. Many of his recorded solos with that award-winning ensemble have become jazz classics studied by both professionals and students across North America. He was also a member of the Rob McConnell Tentet, Nimmons ‘N’ Nine Plus Six, and Ron Collier’s big band. Guido has also been in great demand on harmonica, having been featured in many concerts and on dozens of recordings. Guido has shared the stage with many of the world’s top jazz artists including Dizzy Gillespie, Quincy Jones, Benny Goodman and Diana Krall. He is one of those rare musicians whose sound is unique and immediately recognizable, and has set the international standard for playing jazz flugelhorn. In 1994, Guido was made a Member of the Order of Canada. His CD Lost in the Stars was honoured with a JUNO award in 2004. Guido currently plays jazz concerts, is featured in a myriad of musical situations, and is currently in the studio working on a new CD. Otherwise he can be found at his home Eastern Ontario with his wife Kristin, growing garlic, cooking gourmet meals, and generally enjoying life. Guido is a Life Member of the TMA, having been a member since 1961. The Toronto Musicians’ Association is proud to recognize his decades of artistry with 2009 TMA Lifetime Achievement Award.

STOMPIN’ TOM CONNORS

Tom Connors was born in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1936, and after being orphaned for several years, was adopted by the Aylward family of Skinner’s Pond, PEI. At thirteen, Connors left home and hitchhiked to virtually every part of Canada. Fifteen years later, his big break came when he found himself short of money at the Maple Leaf Hotel in Timmins, and the bartender offered to give him a beer if he would sing a few tunes. This performance turned out to be the start of a 13-month stint playing at the hotel, and also led to a daily spot on the local radio station where he made his first recordings. So began a career that would see Stompin’ Tom Connors release fifty albums which have sold some four million copies in Canada, including many songs that have become treasured favourites across the country.

From his first hit, “Bud the Spud,” Connors’ songs have celebrated and defined what it is to be Canadian. Many of his songs, like “Tillsonburg,” tell stories from his own journeys across the country. He has written about national passions (“The Hockey Song”), national heroes (“Blue Berets”), and national tragedies (“The Black Donnellys” and “Fire in the Mine”). Connors was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1996. He received a SOCAN National Achievement Award in 1999, and the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award in 2000. Tom also holds three honourary Doctorates, from St.

Thomas University (Laws, 1993), the University of Toronto (Laws, 2000), and the University of PEI (Literature, 2003). In 2009, Connors received the special distinction of being portrayed on a stamp released by Canada Post. From 1971 through 1975, Stompin’ Tom received five straight JUNO awards as best country male artist, and another for his album To It and At It. In 1978, he returned them all, explaining, “I feel that the JUNOs should be for people who are living in Canada, whose main base of business operations is in Canada, who are working toward the recognition of Canadian talent in this country and who are trying to further the export of such talent from this country to the world with a view to proudly showing off what this country can contribute to the world market. Until the academy appears to comply more closely with aspirations of this kind, I will no longer stand for any nominations, nor will I accept any award given.” More than simply playing songs about Canada, Stompin’ Tom Connors has been a fierce and uncompromising advocate for truly Canadian music and musicians. His patriotism, integrity, and his tremendous contribution to our nation’s musical heritage are truly exemplary. The Toronto Musicians’ Association is delighted to acknowledge Life Member Stompin’ Tom Connors with our Lifetime Achievement Award.

Victor Feldbrill

by Dr. Réa Beaumont

Throughout his stellar 74-year career, Maestro Victor Feldbrill has conducted symphonies around the world, including every major Canadian orchestra. After studying with Ettore Mazzoleni and Pierre Monteux, Feldbrill’s national and international reputation flourished as he collaborated with Glenn Gould, Claudio Arrau, Janos Starker, Philippe Entrement, Luciano Pavarotti, and many of the finest musicians of the twentieth century. Feldbrill had the honour of conducting the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra in command performances for Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip during their tour of Canada in 1959.

v febrill press releaseBorn in Toronto in 1924, Maestro Feldbrill first joined the Toronto Musicians’ Association at age 16 when he was contracted as a violinist to perform in the High Time Orchestra for a CFRB radio broadcast of music by a fellow TMA member, the composer and producer Howard Cable. With an early start as a violinist in the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Feldbrill began a 62-year relationship with the orchestra that he guest conducted at age 18, later becoming its Resident Conductor (1973-76). He founded the Canadian Chamber Players (1952), was Acting Music Director of Orchestra London Canada (1979-1981), led the National Arts Centre Orchestra in a cross-Canada tour (1992), was Music Director and Principal Conductor of the Hamilton Symphony Orchestra (1990-96), and guest conducted the CBC Orchestra on nineteen occasions.

Beyond the Canadian borders, Feldbrill’s growing stature led to an international career and he was appointed Principal Conductor of Tokyo’s Geidai Philharmonia (1982-87) as a professor at Tokyo University of the Arts. He continued to receive invitations to guest conduct in China, the Philippines, the former Soviet Union (1963, 1966), and throughout Europe, including concerts for the BBC from 1957 onward.

Feldbrill’s long and illustrious career was not without its difficulties, however, and few people are aware that he has always been a strong advocate of ensuring that musicians receive adequate financial support. As part of his contract negotiations with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra in 1958, he stipulated that professional musicians would have to be recognized for their work. As a result — and after many negotiations — the bulk of the WSO were given 26-week contracts for the first time. He also conducted the National Arts Centre Orchestra in support of its 1989 strike concerts, despite warnings from management.

Feldbrill has consistently supported Canadian composers. In his ten seasons as Music Director and Principal Conductor of the WSO (1958-68), he programmed works by Harry Somers, John Weinzweig, Barbara Pentland, Clermont Pépin, and S.C. Eckhardt-Gramatté, to name a few. Although the Canadian compositions met with opposition from the WSO board, they proved to be acceptable to the audience at large, with proof being that they did not affect the box office. He also programmed works by Prokofiev, Stravinsky, Shostakovich, Copland and others, to ensure that Canadian audiences would experience some of the greatest music of their time.

For Canada’s centennial, Feldbrill premièred the Canadian Opera Company’s performances of the country’s most famous opera, Harry Somers’ Louis Riel (1967), which Feldbrill describes as “a masterpiece.” Following one of the performances, the Canadian League of Composers surprised him with the first Canada Music Citation on stage at Toronto’s O’Keefe Centre.

Most classical musicians in Canada have either performed under Feldbrill’s leadership or heard the maestro at work, partly as a result of his dedication to training young musicians, including the University of Toronto Symphony Orchestra (1968-82), Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra (founder, conductor 1974-78), and the National Youth Orchestra of Canada (resident conductor, 1960-62, 1964, 1969, 1975). For his work with young musicians, he was awarded the City of Tokyo medal (1978) and became the first Canadian to receive an American Concert Guild Award (1964). Previously a faculty member for fourteen years and head of its Orchestral and Conducting Department (1968-1982), Feldbrill returned to the University of Toronto Faculty of Music last year as the recipient of the Distinguished Visitor Award where he led the orchestra in concert and taught the department’s conducting majors.

Perhaps Maestro Feldbrill’s greatest achievement is his reputation as an esteemed yet respectful conductor committed to attaining the highest musical standards. He developed a strong vision for present and future generations of Canadians musicians, insisting that they receive the finest training to take their place alongside international artists.

On April 4, Feldbrill will celebrate his 90th birthday. His remarkable talent continues to be recognized with awards from composers, educators, and governments, which he describes as “gratifying.” He was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada (1986), received the Order of Ontario (1999), an Honorary LLD from Brock University (1991), Honorary FRHCM (1978), and the inaugural Roy Thomson Hall Award (1985). This year the Royal Conservatory of Music named him an Honorary Fellow (2014) for his “extraordinary contributions” to music in Canada, and the historic Arts and Letters Club is awarding him the Sir Ernest MacMillan Honorary Membership for Music (2014).

The Toronto Musicians’ Association is pleased to announce that on May 25th, 2014, Maestro Victor Feldbrill will receive the Association’s highest honour, the Lifetime Achievement Award.

April 16, 2020 – To our Members,

Canada Emergency Response Benefit

Yesterday we heard encouraging comments from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau regarding the Canada Emergency Response Benefit and the potential to earn partial income and still qualify for the benefit. Prime Minister Trudeau’s address from April 15, 2020, included the following:

“Today I can announce we are expanding the Canada Emergency Response Benefit to include people making up to $1000 per month…If you earn a thousand dollars or less per month you can now apply to the CERB…[also] royalty payments will not prevent creators from qualifying for benefits under the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).”

As of 5:00 pm on April 15, 2020 the Canada Emergency Response Benefit website, including the Questions and Answers on the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, did not yet reflect the announced changes. We also could not find any published amendments to the Canada Emergency Response Benefit Act or regulations that would put the announced changes into practice. The most official indication of changes comes from the following unanimous motion from the Speaker of the House of Commons on April 11, 2020, then replaced by a motion from Jagmeet Singh, representative for Burnaby-South and Leader of the NDP :

“That, notwithstanding any standing order, special order or usual practice of the House, paragraph r) of the order adopted earlier today be replaced with the following: the government implement measures without delay to address gaps in the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, or other programs, existing or proposed, to address the needs of seasonal workers, those who have exhausted their EI benefits, students, owner/operators, those who continue to receive a modest income from part-time work, royalties, and honoraria, and that, in addition, the government work to ensure essential workers who receive low wages will receive additional income support during this time of crisis, and commit that those who have applied in good faith for and received benefits through CERB or other programs to support them through this crisis will not be unjustly penalized.”

As soon as we are aware of official changes and we have answered additional questions we will bring you more on the benefit,which is now open for applications.

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy

For those who own or run companies with employees, or who may be wondering what support their engagers or employers may be eligible for, the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy has been put into place through the passing of Bill C-14 and the accompanying changes to the Income Tax Act within that bill. Applications for the subsidy are not yet open at the time we wrote this letter.

HST Remittance Deferral

As a reminder, the government will allow businesses, including self-employed individuals, to defer until June 30, 2020 payments of the Goods and Services Tax / Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST).

Auto Insurance Discounts during Covid-19

We are passing this message on from our Home & Auto Insurance partner thePersonal and understand similar discounts may be available from any of your auto insurance providers.

In an effort to support its clients, The Personal is offering an auto insurance premium discount to clients who are staying at home. As people are currently driving their vehicles less, The Personal wants to reflect this situation, offering this discount to clients whose commuting habits have significantly changed and who are only using their vehicles for essential trips to such places as the pharmacy or grocery store. This discount is open to people who, for example, are now working from home or have lost their job, or to anyone who is self-isolating. The discount will be calculated over a three-month period and will be in proportion to the annual mileage declared on their insurance contract. Eligible clients who are interested in receiving this rebate should apply by May 31 at : www.thepersonal.com/tma149 This news can be found on our dedicated landing page at www.thepersonal.com/covid-19-en

Save Live Arts

Please remember to consider and ask your contacts to consider signing onto a set of asks of all levels of government under the title Save Live Arts. You may review the asks and sign the petition at www.savelivearts.ca.

Covid-19 Town Hall #3 – Friday April 24, 2020 @ 10:00 AM

We are going to hold our next town hall for members to ask questions and share resources on Friday April 24, 2020 @ 10:00 AM. Please join us with the details below: Topic: TMA Covid-19 Town Hall #3
Time: Apr 24, 2020 10:00 AM America/Toronto Join Zoom Meeting
https://zoom.us/j/98197536089 Meeting ID: 981 9753 6089

Recording of April 8, 2020 Town Hall

View Recorded Meeting Here

Suspension of Dues Penalties and Reinstatement Fees, Extension of Life Member Dues Deadline

In response to the economic needs of our membership the Board of Directors of TMA149 has decided to make a motion to the membership to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of theTMA149 By-Laws. This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters. Further to provide relief for our longest standing and most senior members the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

TMA149 Health Benefits

Further, although no rule changes were required, the Board of Directors wishes to clarify that all members who have been diagnosed with, or tested positive for, Covid-19 may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.

TMA149 and CFM Office

Our office is physically closed and we are working from home. Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please do continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions. Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail for those planning a post-Covid tour.

Covid-19 Update Archive

We are archiving these updates here, and there are other resources listed.

Resource List

We also wanted to repeat and add to our list of additional resources:

Again feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity, Michael Murray, Executive Director

April 30, 2020 – To our Members,

Canada Emergency Response Benefit

Please note that eligibility criteria for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit has continued to develop over the past two weeks. We believe the changes and clarifications provided on the CERB Questions and Answers site provide our members with increased opportunity to be eligible for the benefit.

Here are some highlights from what we understand:

  • For self-employed contractors business income, net of expenses, of up to $1000 per four week application period, still allows for the applicant to be eligible for the full benefit that period
  • The applicant must log in and complete steps for each period in which they qualify and wish to receive the benefit
  • Royalty payments, such as copyright residuals paid by SOCAN or MROC, which are received as a result of work in a previous period should not be counted towards the maximum $1,000 of business income
  • Pension payments should not be counted towards the maximum $1,000 of business income

Two important remaining questions we received from members relate to the timing of payments, especially cancellation and guarantee payments, and the applicability of HST to the CERB. To serve our members we solicited an opinion from the accounting firm which provides TMA149 with its annual audit, Hogg, Shain and Scheck. That opinion is available for all members here. As a summary:

  • Payments for cancellation, guarantee payout and any completed work should be recognized when they are received or on the date they are contractually expected to be received.
  • CERB payments are not HST applicable, and members should not deduct or remit HST related to CERB payments.

Please note that currently an applicant can only receive the CERB for maximum four periods. In the re-opening plans from Ontario, as well as those from other Provinces and other jurisdictions the removal of restrictions on large gatherings are only included at the final or post-final stages. We will begin work with partners to ask government for an extension of the CERB for workers, including musicians, who rely on the removal of these restrictions. Those who are already in dialogue with their MP’s are also advised to begin these conversations.

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy

For those who are structured as corporations there may be a way to receive support through the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy for your own wages and those of any other employees, instead of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit. We advise that for any further advice or support for this benefit you ask your accountant.

HST Remittance Deferral

As a reminder, the government will allow businesses, including self-employed individuals, to defer until June 30, 2020 payments of the Goods and Services Tax / Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST).

Auto Insurance Discounts during Covid-19

Our Home & Auto Insurance partner thePersonal is offering special support at this time, along with many other insurers. You will receive a specific message from thePersonal in the coming days in order to access benefits, or you may visits www.thepersonal.com/tma149.

Save Live Arts

Please remember to consider and ask your contacts to consider signing onto a set of asks of all levels of government under the title Save Live Arts. You may review the asks and sign the petition at www.savelivearts.ca. These asks will be updated in the coming days and weeks to report on goals already achieved and provide updated goals given what reopening may look like for the live arts.

Covid-19 Town Hall #4 – Friday May 8, 2020 @ 10:00 AM

We are going to hold our next town hall for members to ask questions and share resources on Friday May 8, 2020 @ 10:00 AM. Please join us with the details below:

Topic: TMA149 Covid-19 Town Hall #4
Time: May 8, 2020 10:00 AM America/Toronto

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85276991388

Recording of April 24, 2020 Town Hall

The recording of the April 24, 2020 Town Hall may be found here.

Suspension of Dues Penalties and Reinstatement Fees, Extension of Life Member Dues Deadline

In response to the economic needs of our membership the Board of Directors of TMA149 has decided to make a motion to the membership to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of the TMA149 By-Laws. This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters. Further to provide relief for our longest standing and most senior members the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

TMA149 Health Benefits

Further, although no rule changes were required, the Board of Directors wishes to clarify that all members who have been diagnosed with, or tested positive for, Covid-19 may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.

TMA149 and CFM Office

Our office is physically closed and we are working from home. Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please do continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions. Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail for those planning a post-Covid tour.

Covid-19 Update Archive

We are archiving these updates here, and there are other resources listed.

Resource List
We also wanted to repeat and add to our list of additional resources:

Again feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity, Michael Murray, Executive Director

April 5, 2020 – To our Members,

During the past week we have been working with the Federation, and other partners, to advocate for clarity around the “no work” eligibility requirement for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.  We have communicated that if our members are not allowed to earn a small portion of their regular income while receiving the benefit that it will be difficult for our membership to take advantage of the benefit.  We know many of you have been writing your Members of Parliament and other officials to advocate for the same clarity and changes, and that many petitions and efforts have been established with similar objectives. We also know that a number of Senators asked questions along the same lines in the sitting of the Senate itself. For instance please see the comments from Senator Miville-Dechêne in the Senate on March 25, 2020.  The answers to those questions will give those seeking flexibility in the CERB little assurance, and so far our appeals and those of others have been largely ignored. As a result:

  1. We advise those who lost work due to Covid-19, and have experienced fourteen consecutive days of no income, apply for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit beginning tomorrow April 6, 2020.
  2. For those who do not meet the above criteria we have added a chance to share your story on SaveLiveArts.ca to help us continue to advocate to government.
  3. It is not clear to us what would happen if the “no work” requirement was relaxed at some point after applications were open.  We do know that the CERB is taxable income and that if at a later date the government finds an individual to have received the CERB in error, that the benefit will be due back to the government without interest.  We also know that the application process will not involve proof of lost work.

We wanted to highlight the newest measures that may help members and/or their engagers: The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy has been planned in order to support employers through a subsidy equalling 75% of wages paid to employees, up to a maximum per employee. Legislation is still required to put this benefit into effect and questions remain about whether subsidy of independent or dependent contractors’ wages would be included. The government will allow businesses, including self-employed individuals, to defer until June 30, 2020 payments of the Goods and Services Tax / Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST). Out of the many self-streaming platforms that have emerged, musictogether.ca is the latest and is backed by the Ontario government to support production costs and artist fees. Toronto Arts Foundation and Toronto Arts Council introduced the TOArtist COVID Response Fund, unfortunately the fund was quickly oversubscribed and is currently suspended until TAC recapitalizes.

TMA149 Initiatives

Save Live Arts

Please remember to consider and ask your contacts to consider signing onto a set of asks of all levels of government under the title Save Live Arts.  You may review the asks and sign the petition at www.savelivearts.ca.

Wednesday April 8, 2020 – Covid-19 Town Hall #2

We are going to hold another town hall for members to ask questions and share resources this coming Wednesday April 8, 2020.  Please join us with the details below: Topic: TMA149 Covid-19 Town Hall #2
Time: Apr 8, 2020 10:00 AM America/Toronto Join Zoom Meeting
https://zoom.us/j/269076204 Meeting ID: 269 076 204
Password: 077598 One tap mobile
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Meeting ID: 269 076 204
Password: 077598
Find your local number: https://zoom.us/u/abX5Filt8k

Recording of March 25, 2020 Town Hall

https://tma149.ca/2016-01-26-02-05-12/press-releases/349-coronovirus-information-for-tma149-members

Suspension of Dues Penalties and Reinstatement Fees, Extension of Life Member Dues Deadline

In response to the economic needs of our membership the Board of Directors of TMA149 has decided to make a motion to the membership to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of the TMA149 By-Laws.  This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters. Further to provide relief for our longest standing and most senior members the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

TMA149 Health Benefits

Further, although no rule changes were required, the Board of Directors wishes to clarify that all members who have been diagnosed with, or tested positive for, Covid-19 may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.

TMA149 Office

Our office is now physically closed and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possibleThose working please do continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions.

Covid-19 Update Archive

We are archiving these updates here, and there are other resources listed

Resource List

We also wanted to repeat the list of additional resources:

A number of other relief funds have been established for those and other Covid-19 Resources, please review this list put together by CARFAC. Again feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity, Michael Murray, Executive Director

To our Members,

Canada Emergency Response Benefit Extension

The Government of Canada has announced that eligibility for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) will be extended from maximum 24 weeks of support to maximum 28 weeks of support.  Our understanding is that the extension is made possible by regulation versus parliamentary approval, and therefore the extension can happen without a sitting parliament.  The extension will allow those who have received support in all six CERB periods thus far to also receive support in Period 7 (August 30 – September 26) if they meet the other existing eligibility requirements.  As you will see in the announcement, the Government’s plan is to propose and pass new benefits, deemed “Recovery” benefits, instead of further extending the CERB beyond Period 7.

Three New Recovery Benefits that Require Parliamentary Approval

In the same announcement the Government of Canada shared three planned Recovery benefits, that will require matching legislation to be tabled, debated and approved in Parliament, prior to taking effect.

  • The Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) will provide $400 per week for up to 26 weeks, to workers who are self-employed or are not eligible for EI and who still require income support and who are available and looking for work. This benefit will support Canadians whose income has dropped or not returned due to COVID-19. The benefit will allow Canadians to earn more income while on claim as well as include links to Job Bank, Canada’s national employment service, with career planning tools for those seeking employment. In addition, the government will be working with provinces and territories to share information to ensure that Canadians have access to tools and training opportunities to successfully return to the workforce.
  • The Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) will provide $500 per week for up to two weeks, for workers who are sick or must self-isolate for reasons related to COVID-19.
  • The Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) will provide $500 per week for up to 26 weeks per household, for eligible Canadians unable to work because they must care for:
    • a child under age 12 due to the closures of schools or daycares because of COVID-19.
    • a family member with a disability or a dependent because their day program or care facility is closed due to COVID-19.
    • a child, a family member with a disability, or a dependent who is not attending school, daycare, or other care facilities under the advice of a medical professional due to being at high-risk if they contract COVID-19.

These benefits do not meet all of our Federation’s goals in recovery, but they go along way in addressing our main goals.  If you are still in communication with your MP it would be helpful to express your opinion of the newly announced benefits during your next point of communication.

Federal Advocacy for Financial Support

These are the highlights of Our Federation’s Written Submission for Federal Pre-Budget Consultations

  • Recommendation 1 (CERB): That the government extend the CERB (Canada Emergency Response Benefit) until at least March 31, 2021, but preferably until all crowd prohibitions have been lifted and government allows live performance venues to reopen.
    OR: That the government extend the CERB (as above) and restrict the extension to entertainment workers.
    AND: That the government extend the CERB (under either of the above scenarios), and increase the $1,000 monthly non-penalized earnings, with a gradual claw-back of benefits, rather than termination of the benefit if the maximum earnings are exceeded.
  • Recommendation 2 (UBI): That the government implement a Universal Basic Income.
  • Recommendation 3 (EI Expansion): That the government expand the Employment Insurance (EI) program to fully include the self-employed, both as contributors and recipients.
  • Recommendation 4 (EI Extension): That the government extend EI Regular Benefits, on a temporary basis, past the maximum claim period by 4-week increments, until such time as government lifts all crowd prohibitions.
  • Recommendation 5 (RRSPs): That the government allow Canadians with Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) accounts to make non-taxable, limited withdrawals and to repay these withdrawals over a defined period.

While Parliament is prorogued you can still contact your Federal Member of Parliament to discuss the above recommendations, or additional recommendations.

Provincial Advocacy for Financial Support

These are the highlights of the TMA149 Submission to the Provincial Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs

  1. Introduce a Live Arts Labour Tax Credit and a Live Arts Labour Rebate
  2. Work with Major Financial Institutions and the Federal Government to Introduce a Live Arts Financing Program to complement the Live Arts Labour Tax Credit and a Live Arts Labour Rebate
  3. Research and consider incentivizes for Ontario Musician and Music Maker Participation in Screen-Based Productions that receive Ontario Cultural Media Tax Credits
  4. Introduce Government of Ontario Backed Guarantees to Established Multi-Employer Pension Plans

TMA149 is scheduled to appear before the Committee on Monday August 24, 2020 @ 5:00 PM.

Please consider contacting your Member of Provincial Parliament to discuss the above recommendations, or additional recommendations.

Canada Emergency Business Account

TMA149 did not highlight the Canada Emergency Business Account early in the pandemic, as it was not a match for the majority of our membership.  Changes this summer make the loan program much more suited to many TMA149 members and we recommend you look into the program.

This $55 billion program provides interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits.

Repaying the balance of the loan on or before December 31, 2022 will result in loan forgiveness of 25 percent (up to $10,000).

As of June 26, 2020, businesses eligible for CEBA now include owner-operated small businesses that do not have a payroll, sole proprietors receiving business income directly, as well as family-owned corporations remunerating in the form of dividends rather than payroll.

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy

For those receiving or interested in the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy(CEWS), the extension of the CEWS was passed prior to Parliament being prorogued, and the rules loosened for periods 4 through 7.   The key consideration for eligibility is whether members were employed or could be employed by an entity that had an existing CRA Payroll account, often referred to as a RP account, on March 15, 2020.  After changes made to the program in July companies using a 3rd party payroll company as the employer of record may be eligible. Please see the bulletin from the accounting firm BDO Canada for more information.

Ontario Stage 3 Reopening Guidelines

Our entire local has entered Stage 3 of “A Framework for Reopening our Province” and we would like to highlight TMA149’s understanding of Stage 3 Rules and Regulations as they apply to live musical performance:
Here is a summary of our understanding of the key Stage 3 regulations for our members:

  1. Rehearsals, recording and scoring sessions, and streaming performances without an audience
    1. Musicians performing on acoustic, electric, electronic and computer-based instruments in a studio or location not open to the general public may do so without a set limit to the number of musicians and other workers (crew, technical workers, engineers, administration) allowed, but must observe other public safety measures (distancing, hand hygiene, contact tracing, etc.).
    2. This means that rehearsals, sound recording, recording for the screen, as well as being filmed playing or miming an instrument on a film / television set (aka ‘Sidelining’) and live performances for live or on demand distribution, without any audience in attendance, may occur under fewer limitations than if there is an audience involved.
  2. Performances at restaurants and bars
    • Establishments must take appropriate measures to ensure physical distancing of at least two metres between patrons from different tables, unless separated by plexiglass or some other impermeable barrier.  Otherwise, outside of the City of Toronto there is no specific limit on the number of patrons allowed in the establishment.
    • Establishments in the City of Toronto have additional restrictions imposed by By-law 665-2020, that customers must stay seated except when a customer is entering or exiting the area, travelling to and from the premises’ washroom or paying.  Also for the City of Toronto, no more than 100 persons are permitted to be inside the premises at any one time, but an exception may be applied for to increase the limit to 200 persons.
    • Singing or music may be performed by a person or group at the restaurant or bar, with restrictions, including barriers between the stage and patrons if there are vocalists, wind or brass players performing, and physical distancing. Dancing may only be performed by someone working at the establishment with restrictions.
  3. Performances at religious services, rites or ceremonies, and wedding ceremonies or funeral services
    • People gathering indoors for religious services, rites or ceremonies, and wedding ceremonies or funeral services, can continue to fill up to 30 percent of the capacity of the particular room, as introduced in Stage 2.
    • Singing or music may be performed by a person or group at the religious service, rite or ceremony, with restrictions, including barriers between the performance location and patrons when vocalists, wind or brass players are performing, and physical distancing. Dancing may only be performed by someone working at the service, rite or ceremony, with restrictions.
  4. Performances elsewhere (at a planned or spontaneous event, indoors or outdoors, such as a community event or gathering, wedding reception, funeral reception, concert, live show, festival, conference, parade, sporting event, fundraiser, fair, festival, or open house).
    • Indoor gathering limit is a maximum of 50 people;
    • Outdoor gathering limit is a maximum of 100 people;
    • People at their place of work, including performers and crews, do not count towards gathering limits;
    • Performers must maintain physical distancing of two metres from every other person, except from other performers where necessary for purposes of the performance; and
    • Plexiglass or some other impermeable barrier is required between the audience and the stage when the performance involves vocalists, brass or wind players.

TMA149 Request for Changes to Stage 3 Reopening Guidelines

TMA149 has sent a submission to the Ontario Jobs and Recover Committee that the committee consider the following regarding Stage 3 Rules and Regulations:

  1. Can an assured distance of 4 – 6 m between singers/performers of wind instruments and attendees provide the same protection as an impermeable barrier? If so, the updating of the guideline to allow for either an impermeable barrier or a 4 – 6 m distance would assist more producers and venues to put on live performing arts events safely.
  2. Can the maximum number of attendees gathering be increased to allow for gatherings at 30% of capacity, like religious services, or perhaps even greater, using additional restrictions? Such as:
    1. Mandatory masks for all attendees;
    2. Limited speaking opportunities and perhaps even speaking, singing, and shouting restrictions for audience members;
    3. Limited alcohol availability and perhaps even alcohol restrictions;
    4. Reasonable time limits applied to events, nevertheless no longer than the length of time it would take for the performances / works / songs / repertoire planned for; and/or
    5. The discouraging of intermissions or breaks in performance where they can be prevented.

Increasing gathering limits under the above conditions would allow for performances to become more economically viable than under current restrictions.  TMA149 will be following up with similar and further requests of the City of Toronto in coming days.

Crowded Out – An Abacus Study commissioned by Music Canada on the Impact of Covid-19 on Musicians

 

Music Canada commissioned Abacus Data to study the impact of the pandemic on musicians’ lives, art, and, work.  According to the national survey of over 700 professional musicians most respondents say that the number of bookings so far for 2021 is lower than usual, and many don’t expect a quick return to the stage – either because of government restrictions or personal discomfort performing while the risk of the virus exists.

TMA149 COVID-19 Health & Safety Guidelines

We want to acknowledge that our membership may be uncomfortable returning to their work as professional musicians due to health and safety concerns.  No matter what your level of comfort every musician deserves a safe and healthy work environment, free of harassment. That is why we worked with provincial and municipal guidelines, and with guidelines developed with health professionals and musicians from Local 47 of our Federation in Burbank, California, to create a distinct set of TMA149 Covid-19 Health & Safety Guidelines.  Please share and discuss these guidelines with your fellow musicians, the leaders and contractors on your engagements, and if you are comfortable, with your engagers.

The guidelines are divided into the following four areas:

  1. Facilities
  2. Social Distancing and safety
  3. Sheet music and other paper materials
  4. Illness-related issues

While many of these responsibilities remain with the venue and / or engager under the Occupational Health & Safety Act, including the supply of any special equipment or barriers, members have an obligation to cooperate and make workplaces as safe and healthy as possible.

Ontario Arts Council Launches Arts Response Initiative

The Ontario Arts Council (OAC) has opened applications to its Arts Response Initiative(ARI) to help Ontario artists and arts organizations respond to challenges posed by the pandemic. Funding of $4,000 for individual artists, $15,000 for collectives and organizations and $30,000 for partnerships is available for one-time specialized support.  For more information visit the OAC Website’s ARI page.

City of Toronto Launches $2 million Partnership in Support of Black Music Professionals

Mayor John Tory announced a $2 million partnership between the City of Toronto, the Slaight Family Foundation and Advance, Canada’s Black Music Business Collective, to support the entry, retention and advancement of Black professionals in Toronto’s music industry.

Streamed Performances Part 1 – TMA149 and CFM/AFM Streaming Agreements – Tamizdat Resource – MPTF Support

We are aware that more than ever members wish to perform for live streams and on-demand streams to support their careers, to connect with their audience, and to create an income source at this difficult time.  These streams may be self-produced or at the request of a live or media engager.  The following are considerations before you produce a stream or agree to perform for a stream:

TMA149 and CFM/AFM Streaming Agreements

There are various agreements that have been promulgated or negotiated by our Federation for streaming to ensure musicians are paid fairly and have their rights protected when performing on a stream.  We find at this time the two most useful agreements for independent streaming are:

  1. The TMA AFM Covid-19 Streaming Package (Login Required), which allows for live streaming with a percentage increase on a TMA149 negotiated or promulgated live agreement fee.   On-demand streaming requires an additional fee.  It is best suited for longer programs, such as whole concerts or long pieces (30 minutes +). This is the agreement that must be used if you would like MPTF support for a live-steamed concert that is free and open to the public.
  2. Limited Pressing with Visual Step Up (Login Required), which allows for live and on demand streaming up to a cap, then must be converted into a full SRLA session.  Engagement fees are calculated based on the length of finished product (in segments of 15 minutes).  This agreement tends to be better for shorter content (30 minutes or less).

Tamizdat Streaming Resource – The Legal Landscape of Live Streaming

Our partner in advocating for fair musician immigration (more on that next), Tamizdat, has released a guide to the legal landscape in copyright for streaming, as well as some platform and monetization options.  While we do not support everything in the document we do believe it is a useful resource for members.  In Part 2 we will be working with Rob DeVito from Society of Sound on a Made in Canada resource guide.

Music Performance Trust Fund Supports Streaming Concerts

The Music Performance Trust Fund, associated with our Federation and the major recording labels, is now accepting applications for streaming concerts that are free and open to the public.  This is in addition to the regular support for live concerts that are free and open to the public.  They will be supporting a small number of these events through a grant equal to 100% of scale fees under TMA149 / CFM / AFM agreements due to musicians.   We are accepting applications through our local.  Please email Jay Boehmer, TMA149 MPTF Coordinator, with your ideas for streamed or live performances that are worthy of support.

United States Citizenship & Immigration Service Ignores the Federation and its Partners – Increases P2 Visa Fees

Back in April our Federation joined with partners across the United States to call for the relaxation of visa rules and fees to support response to and recovery from the Covid-19 Pandemic.  USCIS has ignored this call and has doubled down by increasing P2 Visa fees effective October 1.   We know this could not come at a worse time and we have not given up advocating for more reasonable artist immigration to the United States.  Stay tuned for next steps.

Currently and for all applications on or before September 29 the P2 Visa fee is $460 USD.  Beginning October 1, 2020 the processing fee is $695 USD.  The expected processing time is 60 days.  More information may be found on the Federation’s Canadian website, under work permits.

Next Covid-19 Town Hall – Friday August 28, 2020 @ 10:00 AM

We are having our next Covid-19 Town Hall Friday August 28, 2020.  Please bring questions for fellow members and TMA149 staff about next steps in response and recovery.

Suspension of Dues Penalties and Reinstatement Fees, Extension of Life Member Dues Deadline

In response to economic needs our membership has passed a motion to to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of the TMA149 By-Laws.  This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters.  We are currently only able to make this offer until September 30, 2020 due to Federation restrictions, but we are in discussions to extend the offer.  In addition, to provide relief for our longest-standing and most senior members, the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

TMA149 Health Benefits

Further, although no rule changes were required, the Board of Directors wishes to clarify that all members who have been diagnosed with, or tested positive for, Covid-19 may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.

TMA149 and CFM Office

Our office is remaining physically closed for the time being and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please do continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions by electronically, by mail or courier.  Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail for those planning a post-Covid tour.

Covid-19 Update Archive

All Covid-19 Updates and other Covid-19 resources may be found here:
https://tma149.ca/covid-19-archive/.

New Website, Member Login and Lost Work Form

We have launched our new website and you should have received an email back in June from “tma@bellnet.ca” with login details.  Please check your junk mail folder if you cannot find the email. Once logged in you can update your instruments and other information for our directory and enter lost work due to Covid-19 in a form that will produce a form for your records.  The lost work forms and information can be retrieved at a later time by logging in again.  If you are having any trouble with login please contact Dennis Passley, Membership & Contracts Coordinator dpassley@tma149.ca.

Always feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity,


Michael Murray, Executive Director

In this update:

  1. Attend this Friday’s General Meeting
  2. Join request for clarity regarding CERB Eligibility Letters
  3. Understand Reopening Rules
  4. Advocate to Government
  5. Learn about Ontario Second Career Grants
  6. Learn about PPE and Covid-19 Mitigation Funding
  7. Review many Funding Options
  8. Get help with Mental Health
  9. Understand P2 Fee Changes
  10. Come Out to the Next Town Hall
  11. Remind yourself of TMA149 and CFM Office Access
  12. Explore TMA149’s Covid-19 Update Archive

AnchorGeneral Meeting – Including 2021 TMA149 Covid Relief Motions

As first published in Crescendo in November, TMA149 is holding a General Meeting this Friday.

Motions to be discussed and voted upon include:

2021 Covid-19 Motion 1 of 6 – Dues Relief and Restructure

2021 Covid-19 Motion 2 of 6 – Expelled Status Relief

2021 Covid-19 Motion 3 of 6 –Reinstatement Relief

2021 Covid-19 Motion 4 of 6 –Work Dues Relief for Music Lessons

The full agenda and other motions are in the December Crescendo.

If you need help with setting up your technology please contact Scott Harrison, Business Representative (and resident Zoom Tech).

Connect on mobile or computer to fully participate and vote:

Topic: TMA149 General Meeting
Time: Dec 18, 2020 11:00 AM America/Toronto

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Meeting ID: 861 1916 8708
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Meeting ID: 861 1916 8708
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AnchorCERB Eligibility Letters

We are appreciative of the Federal Government’s leadership in supporting self-employed persons through the pandemic by implementing the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (the “CERB”).  These benefits have been, and continue to be, a lifeline for many of our members.  Unfortunately many members have received a letter from the Canada Revenue Agency (the “CRA”) stating the CRA cannot confirm the member’s eligibility for CERB amounts already received (the “Eligibility Letter”).   As a whole, the Eligibility Letter is most easily understood as a request to repay all amounts received under the CERB.

The key consideration in the Eligibility Letter is that CRA is asserting that the $5,000 of self-employment income threshold to determine up front eligibility must be net of expenses, not gross.

Please talk to your accounting professional if you have received this letter.

In the meantime TMA149 has coordinated an approach to government joined by unions and guilds representing more than 75,000 arts and culture workers, to ask that the government reconsider the terms of the Eligibility Letter.  We are not asking that members reinforce this approach with their own action given the sensitive nature of the issue.  We will share the response of government if and when it is received.

AnchorMaking Sense of Reopening Rules and Lockdown Funding

The Province of Ontario released its new “COVID-19 Response Framework: Keeping Ontario Safe and Open” on November 3, 2020 and it has been revised multiple times since that date.

You can find your region and its level of restrictions here.

Further, TMA149 understands the following as it pertains to our membership, for all levels including lockdown.

  • Recording studios, concert venues, theatres and cinemas, as well as other spaces, can open for the purpose of rehearsing or performing a recorded or broadcasted concert, sound recording, film/television scoring, recorded artistic event or recorded theatrical performance provided that no spectators/audiences are present, and performers maintain physical distancing (with limited exceptions). In addition, when in Control (Red) or Lockdown (Grey) status singers and players of brass or wind instruments must be separated from other performers by plexiglass or some other impermeable barrier.
  • For all other restrictions please review the new framework.
  • We are curious if any of our members have accessed the $300 million in property tax and energy cost reimbursement offered by the provincial government.  Please share your stories by emailing Michael Murray, Executive Director directly.  If you would like to apply, please click here.

AnchorMPTF Funding for Free Live Streams, Streaming Best Practices and TMA149 Streaming Agreements

For members who wish to stream their performances to the public, or are hired by community organizations, businesses, schools or institutions to do so, here are some guidelines we would like you to read:

For help with any of the above contact our staff.

AnchorAdvocacy Update

TMA149 and the Federation continue to advocate for musicians in the following areas:

  • Advocacy that musicians are included in a fair and transparent reopening plan at the Province of Ontario and the municipalities and regions in our local.
  • That musicians fairly benefit through increased public investment in the arts & culture sector and through legislative changes at the Federal and Provincial level.

Learn About Ontario Second Career GrantsAnchor

You can get new skills – those needed for jobs in demand now – and financial support when you qualify for Second Career.

Apply for up to $28,000 for costs including:

  • tuition
  • books
  • manuals, workbooks or other instructional costs
  • transportation
  • basic living allowance (maximum $410 per week)
  • child care

Attend an upcoming free information session provided by George Brown College.

AnchorOntario Together – Provincial Portal for PPE, Covid-19 Mitigation Ideas and Related Funding

The Province of Ontario has set up a portal to help businesses supply and source PPE, as well as receive ideas and proposals on how to mitigate Covid-19 while reopening the province.  There is $50 million in funding available for approved projects through the portal, and the province announced $300 million in support for businesses affected by the re-entry into Phase 2 in certain regions, including our region, of the province.  Additional details on how to apply for the $300 million announced are pending.

Reconnect Festival and Event Program 2020-2021 and Funding ReminderAnchor

The Province of Ontario announced the Reconnect Festival and Event Program to:

  • provide experiences that encourage people to travel locally and rediscover the beauty and diversity of their community
  • draw attendees and provide positive economic impact for the local community, the region and the province
  • create job opportunities for Ontarians, particularly in the tourism, culture and entertainment sectors
  • increase Ontario’s profile through media and/or broadcast exposure to generate interest in future travel to the province once it is safe to do so again

Remember that this program is additional to special and regular funding at Canada Council for the Arts, FACTOR, Ontario Arts Council, Ontario Music Investment Fund, Ontario Trillium Foundation and Toronto Arts Council.

Mental Health SupportsAnchor

TMA149 wishes to remind our members of the mental health supports:

  • TMA149 Benevolent Funds – members who have mental health diagnosis may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Member Assistance Fund, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians. Log into the member side of the TMA149 website to find out more and access application materials.
  • Unison Benevolent Fund Counselling & Health Solutions – The Unison Benevolent Fund offers a toll-free number to connect Canadian music professionals with resources and support for personal and practical issues. This service is free, anonymous, confidential and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Before you make the call, please register with Unison. 1-855-986-4766.
  • ConnexOntario – ConnexOntario provides service information for people experiencing problems with gambling, drugs, alcohol, or mental health. Helpful, supportive system navigation specialists answer all calls, emails or web chat requests 24/7. Connex Ontario referral service is free and confidential. 1-866-531-2600 or Chat or Email.

 

P2 Visa Fee ChangesAnchor

Back in April our Federation joined with partners across the United States to call for the relaxation of visa rules and fees to support response to and recovery from the Covid-19 Pandemic.  USCIS ignored this call and doubled down.  Currently the P2 Visa regular processing fee is $460 USD.  Beginning October 1, 2020 the processing fee was scheduled to increase to $695 USD.  As already reported by our Federation, due to the political action of immigration advocates in the state of California, the P2 Visa increase and various other changes to immigration into the United States have been put on pause pending legal action.

USCIS after receiving this decision did quickly move to increase premium processing fees.

We will keep you updated and our Federation has put together a committee to formulate an ask of both the Canadian and US governments to relieve the burden of border crossing fees and wait times.  TMA149 Executive Director Michael Murray is a member of this committee chaired by Federation  Vice-President from Canada Alan Willaert, and including Canadian Office Executive Director Liana White, Local 547 Calgary Secretary-Treasurer Doug Kuss and Local 161-710 Washington DC President Ed Malaga.

Next Town Hall – Monday December 21, 2020 @ 10:00 AMAnchor

We are having our next Covid-19 Town Hall Monday December 21, 2020 @ 10:00 AM.  Please bring questions for fellow members and TMA149 staff.

Topic: TMA149 Town Hall
Time: Dec 21, 2020 10:00 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting
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Meeting ID: 840 4391 6518
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Meeting ID: 840 4391 6518
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TMA149 and CFM OfficeAnchor

Our office is remaining physically closed for the time being and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions electronically, by mail or by courier.  Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail.

Covid-19 Update ArchiveAnchor

All Covid-19 Updates and other Covid-19 resources may be found here:
https://tma149.ca/covid-19-archive/.

Always feel free to reach out to TMA149 Board or office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity

 

All 2021 Covid-19 Relief Motions passed at the December General meeting.  Regular dues of 4 or more quarters is now $49 per quarter or $196 per year as compared to $255 in 2020.  You can now log in and pay dues at the new rates.

A reminder: As part of our 2021 Covid-19 plan all receipts, membership cards, and newsletters will be delivered digitally and not in hard copy format.

We invite those who are able to provide a payment equivalent to the difference between discounted annual dues in 2021 as compared to 2020 ($39) in support of TMA149’s Member Assistance Fund using Interac E-Mail Money Transfer sent to epayments@tma149.ca with “MAF Donation” in the description.

CERB Eligibility Update

Please view the following regarding Canada Emergency Response Benefit eligibility issues:

Aside from the above, TMA149 is not aware of any other government updates to policies in this situation.  TMA149 understands that government’s current communication of policy will stand subject to any further amendments, but that the situation is still being discussed across a number of Departments in government.

Ontario Declaration of Emergency

A declaration of emergency was made on January 12, 2021 for all of Ontario.  As a result enhanced public health and workplace safety measures are anticipated to be in place until at least February 11, 2021.

The Province has released a guidance document: Enhancing Public Health and Workplace Safety Measures in the Provincewide Shutdown

In the guidance document businesses that are permitted to open:

  • Sound recording, production, publishing and distribution businesses
  • Film and television production, including all supporting activities such as hair, makeup and wardrobe:
    • No studio audiences permitted to be on the film or television set
    • No more than 10 performers may be permitted to be on the film or television set
    • Set must be configured and operated in such a way as to enable persons on the set to maintain a physical distance of at least two metres from other persons, except where necessary for the filming of the film or television production
    • Persons who provide hair or makeup services must wear appropriate personal protective equipment
    • Singers and players of brass or wind instruments must be separated from any other performers by plexiglass or some other impermeable barrier
  • Film and television postproduction, visual effects and animation studios

The following are not listed as businesses permitted to open:

  • Concert venues, theatres and cinemas for the purpose of rehearsing or performing a recorded or broadcasted concert, artistic event, theatrical performance or other performance.  Despite attempts to get further information, TMA149 has not received additional clarity on what differentiates this from film and television productions as stated above.
  • In person individual or group music lessons, other than those at a Post Secondary institution as per the rules in the guideline.

Learn About Ontario Second Career Grants

Some members may qualify for Second Career grants.

From direct member experience TMA149 has learned the following regarding Second Career grants:

  • For Second Career, the program you select must be from a specific list.  There are 3 categories:  Advanced Manufacturing, Life Sciences and Information/Communication Technology.
  • In order to qualify you must be laid off and have a ROE (record of employment) with the letter “A” on it which means you were laid off not that you resigned.   The date on your ROE is important.
  • Second Career is based on a matrix system and you must achieve 16 points to qualify:
  1. Active Job Search:  you need to be job searching from the time you were laid off for more than 26 weeks to get 3 points.  If it  has been less than 13 weeks it is 1 point.
  2. Duration of Unemployment:  You  must be unemployed for more than 26 weeks from the date on your ROE.  This will give you 3 points in the matrix.  If it is less than 13 weeks you will get 1 point.
  3. Education:  If you only have High School Education you will get 3 points, but if you have a University or College degree already you will only get 1 point.
  4. Work History:  if you have worked more than 7 years in the occupation you were let go of, you will get 3 points.  If it is less than 3 years you will only get 1 point.
  5. Labour Market Prospects:  If you choose an occupation from the Second Career list that requires a Licence such as a Skilled Trade, you will get 3 points.  Other occupations such as Web Designer will give you 2 points.
  6. Type of Training: If you choose a NOC (National Occupational Classification) B or C occupation, you will be given 3 points.  If you choose a NOC A occupation you will be given 2 points.
  7. Experience: If you have worked in a NOC D occupation, such as a server, you will achieve 3 points.  If you have worked in a NOC B or C occupation you will achieve 2 points.  A musician is a NOC A occupation which is 0 points.

 

Ontario Small Business Support Grant

Applications are open for the new Ontario Small Business Support Grant, which helps small businesses that are required to close or significantly restrict services under the Provincewide Shutdown effective December 26, 2020.

Starting at $10,000 for all eligible businesses, the grant provides businesses with funding to a maximum of $20,000 to help cover decreased revenue expected as a result of the Provincewide Shutdown.

Businesses will have to have a business number in order to be eligible. If a business does not have a business number, they will be directed to apply for a business number before they can proceed with their application.

Mental Health Supports

TMA149 wishes to remind our members of the mental health supports:

  • TMA149 Benevolent Funds – members who have mental health diagnosis may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Member Assistance Fund, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians. Log into the member side of the TMA149 website to find out more and access application materials.
  • Unison Benevolent Fund Counselling & Health Solutions – The Unison Benevolent Fund offers a toll-free number to connect Canadian music professionals with resources and support for personal and practical issues. This service is free, anonymous, confidential and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Before you make the call, please register with Unison. 1-855-986-4766.
  • ConnexOntario – ConnexOntario provides service information for people experiencing problems with gambling, drugs, alcohol, or mental health. Helpful, supportive system navigation specialists answer all calls, emails or web chat requests 24/7. Connex Ontario referral service is free and confidential. 1-866-531-2600 or Chat or Email.

P2 Visa Fee Changes

Back in April our Federation joined with partners across the United States to call for the relaxation of visa rules and fees to support response to and recovery from the Covid-19 Pandemic.  USCIS ignored this call and doubled down.  Currently the P2 Visa regular processing fee is $460 USD.  Beginning October 1, 2020 the processing fee was scheduled to increase to $695 USD.  As already reported by our Federation, due to the political action of immigration advocates in the state of California, the P2 Visa increase and various other changes to immigration into the United States have been put on pause pending legal action.

USCIS after receiving this decision did quickly move to increase premium processing fees.

We will keep you updated and our Federation has put together a committee to formulate an ask of both the Canadian and US governments to relieve the burden of border crossing fees and wait times.  TMA149 Executive Director Michael Murray is a member of this committee chaired by Federation  Vice-President from Canada Alan Willaert, and including Canadian Office Executive Director Liana White, Local 547 Calgary Secretary-Treasurer Doug Kuss and Local 161-710 Washington DC President Ed Malaga.

Next Town Hall – Monday Friday January 29, 2021 @ 10:00 AM

We are having our next Covid-19 Town Hall Friday January 29, 2021 @ 10:00 AM.  Please bring questions for fellow members and TMA149 staff.

Topic: TMA149 Town Hall
Time: Jan 29, 2021 10:00 AM America/Toronto

Join Zoom Meeting
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Meeting ID: 825 2948 8885
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+15873281099,,82529488885# Canada

Dial by your location
+1 438 809 7799 Canada
+1 587 328 1099 Canada
+1 647 374 4685 Canada
+1 647 558 0588 Canada
+1 778 907 2071 Canada
Meeting ID: 825 2948 8885
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kcOSetoQc8

TMA149 and CFM Office

Our office is remaining physically closed for the time being and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions electronically, by mail or by courier.  Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail.

Covid-19 Update Archive

All Covid-19 Updates and other Covid-19 resources may be found here:
https://tma149.ca/covid-19-archive/.

Always feel free to reach out to TMA149 Board or office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity

To our Members,

Bill in the House regarding the CERB and other Measures

We have been working together collectively as a membership for the extension of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit for musicians.

  • Both you and TMA149 represented by the Federation’s Vice President from Canada Alan Willaert, joined together with a coalition of performing arts workers in asking for an extension of the CERB until at least the end of 2020 in an April 21, 2020 letter to the Federal Government;
  • The Federation has been meeting regularly with the Department of Canadian Heritage represented by CFM Executive Director Liana White;
  • Our sister local, Local 406 in Quebec, under the leadership of President Luc Fortin has also been part of a similar coalition of French-language culture and media associations in regular discussions with the government with the same message;
  • Many of you have been in direct contact with your MP’s

Today a bill is being introduced in the House of Commons that will alter the CERB and consider the next stage of Covid-19 response and recovery.  We do not anticipate that the bill will meet our goals.  Please consider taking the following steps as we continue to apply pressure if this bill does not meet our goals:

  1. Review the bill and debate at the House of Commons website.
  2. Ensure you and your contacts visit SaveLiveArts.ca and consider signing the petition to support the extension and other considerations;
  3. Have your own conversation with your local MP about the importance of the extension. You may direct them to the April 21, 2020 letter for a comprehensive request.

Provincial Advocacy
Please also note that TMA149 followed up the April 21, 2020 letter to the Federal Government with its own May 13, 2020 letter to the Provincial Government with requests for support in the Province’s jurisdiction.  You may  wish to have follow-up conversations with your elected Provincial representative, your MPP, about this letter and feel free to reach out to me directly with any questions, comments or suggested additions.

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy

While the extension of the CERB is our focus, the extension of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy has already been announced.  After speaking to our audit accounting firm about the subsidy we do think that some members may be eligible.  The key consideration is whether members were employed or could be employed by an entity that had an existing CRA Payroll account, often referred to as a RP account, on March 15, 2020.  If you own or are associated with a company that has a payroll account and had that account on March 15, 2020 there may be a path to eligibility.  Please see the bulletin from our audit accounting firm Hogg, Shain, & Scheck for more information.

AFM Freelance Fund Fully Subscribed

Our Federation launched a Musicians’ Relief Fund dedicated to freelance musicians, but as many other Covid-19 funds, it is now fully subscribed and our Federation has suspended the receipt of applications.  Those who have submitted applications already are having their applications reviewed. We will let you know if our Federation is able to reopen the receipt of applications.

Musicians’ Performance Trust Fund Supports Streaming Concerts and Socially Distanced Live Concerts

The Music Performance Trust Fund, associated with our Federation and the major recording labels, has shown leadership and indicated they will be accepting applications for streaming concerts and socially distanced live concerts that respect social distance regulations.  They will be supporting a small number of these events through a grant equal to 100% of scale fees.  These could include performances from sidewalks or parking lots beside high rises or other socially distanced live performance ideas.  We are accepting applications through our local.  Please email Jay Boehmer, TMA149 MPTF Coordinator, with your ideas that consider social distance regulations and please discuss your existing relationships and resources that would help implement the idea.

Stage 1 and Stage 2 Openings

Please note as of May 19, 2020 Music Studios were included in the detailed list of businesses that can reopen under the Stage 1 Framework for Reopening our Province.

As of June 12, 2020 many other business can open outside of the Greater Toronto Area including the Simcoe Region in our local.  Please see the Stage 2 Framework for Reopening our Province.

Safe Return to Work

As different parts of the community reopen, we are publishing our own recommendations as well as guidelines from our colleague organizations on the safe return to work in the recording and live sectors.  Please visit this page for updates.

Mental Health Supports

As this crisis continues Mental Health is of greater and greater concern.  Let’s support each other the best we can and know the Provincial Government has listed some great resources here.

Next Covid-19 Town Hall – Friday June 19, 2020 @ 10:00 AM

We are having our next Covid-19 Town Hall Friday June 19, 2020.  We will discuss updates on government support.  Please bring questions for fellow members and TMA149 staff about next steps in response and recovery.

Topic: Covid-19 Town Hall for Members
Time: Jun 19, 2020 10:00 AM America/Toronto

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https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83188742957

Meeting ID: 831 8874 2957
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Recording of May 8, 2020 Town Hall

The recording of the May 8, 2020 Town Hall may be found here.

Suspension of Dues Penalties and Reinstatement Fees, Extension of Life Member Dues Deadline

In response to economic needs all of us as a collective membership have passed a motion to to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of the TMA149 By-Laws.  This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters. Further to provide relief for our longest standing and most senior members the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

TMA149 Health Benefits

Further, although no rule changes were required, the Board of Directors wishes to clarify that all members who have been diagnosed with, or tested positive for, Covid-19 may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.

TMA149 and CFM Office

Our office is physically closed and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please do continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions.  Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail for those planning a post-Covid tour.

Covid-19 Update Archive

We are archiving these updates here, and there are other resources listed:
https://tma149.ca/covid-19-archive/.

New Website, Member Login and Lost Work Form

We have launched our new website and you should have received an email from “tma@bellnet.ca” with login details.  Please check your junk mail from this past weekend if you cannot find the email. Once logged in you can update your instruments and other information for our directory and enter lost work due to Covid-19 in a form that will produce a form for your records.  The lost work forms and information can be retrieved at a later time by logging in again.  If you are having any trouble with login please contact Dennis Passley, Membership & Contracts Coordinator dpassley@tma149.ca.

Resource List

We also wanted to repeat and add to our list of additional resources:

Again feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity,


Michael Murray, Executive Director

Covid-19

To our Members,

Advocacy for Extension of the CERB and other Measures

We know the vast majority of our membership faces great uncertainty about when they will be able to return to performing and earning a living. As we indicated in my last update and as many of you have reiterated to me through direct communication, the extension of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit for musicians is the top priority in our community. Both you and TMA149 represented by the Federation joined together with a coalition of performing arts workers in asking for an extension of the CERB until at least the end of 2020 in an April 21, 2020 letter to the Federal Government. You may follow-up this letter by:

  1. Ensuring you and your contacts visit SaveLiveArts.ca and consider signing the petition to support the extension and other considerations; and
  2. Having your own conversation with your local MP about the importance of the extension. You may direct them to the April 21, 2020 letter for a comprehensive request.

Please note that TMA149 followed up the April 21, 2020 letter to the Federal Government with its own May 13, 2020 letter to the Provincial Government with requests for support in the Province’s jurisdiction. You may wish to have follow-up conversations with your elected Provincial representative, your MPP, about this letter and feel free to reach out to me directly with any questions, comments or suggested additions.

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy

While the extension of the CERB is our focus, considering the extension of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy has already been announced, we have decided to solicit more information on how members could become eligible for the subsidy both now and in the near future. We will share this information as we receive it. Those who are interested in the CEWS now, and who have access to accounting and legal advice, should speak directly with their accountant and/or lawyer on accessing the CEWS and what impact it may have on your business.

AFM Freelance Fund

Our Federation has launched a Musicians’ Relief Fund dedicated to freelance musicians. Please review the criteria and apply if you need assistance. Please note our members are eligible other than those that continue to receive payments under a Collective Bargaining Agreement. In the case of TMA149 this only excludes core orchestra members of TSO, COC, National Ballet and Tafelmusik, and those with ongoing work in Commercial Announcements.

Emergency Support Fund for Cultural, Heritage and Sport Organizations

The Federal Government has announced how distribution of its special fund for our sector will be distributed. If you or your organization have an ongoing funding history with the Department of Canadian Heritage, Canada Council for the Arts, or FACTOR, there may be support that impacts you in Phase 1 of the distribution. For details please visit this page.

Detailed List of Stage 1 Openings – Music Studios can Reopen

Please note as of May 19, 2020 Music Studios were included in the detailed list of businesses that can reopen under the Framework for Reopening our Province.

Safe Return to Work

As different parts of the community reopen, we are publishing our own recommendations as well as guidelines from our colleague organizations on the safe return to work in the recording and live sectors. Please visit this post for updates.

Mental Health Supports

As this crisis continues Mental Health is of greater and greater concern. Let’s support each other the best we can and know the Provincial Government has listed some great resources here.

May 22 Practice General Meeting – 11:00 AM

As a reminder if you are interested in attending the Online Annual General Meetings next week and you want to try out the technology and get a feel for the meeting style please attend today’s practice general meeting. Please note that General Meetings are quite procedural and much different from the Town Halls that we have been having for Covid-19 Updates. We will hold another Town Hall in June after the General Meetings have concluded.

Topic: TMA149 Test General Meeting
Time: May 22, 2020 11:00 AM

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/94252501662

Meeting ID: 942 5250 1662

Recording of May 8, 2020 Town Hall

The recording of the May 8, 2020 Town Hall may be found here.

Suspension of Dues Penalties and Reinstatement Fees, Extension of Life Member Dues Deadline

In response to the economic needs of our membership the Board of Directors of TMA149 has decided to make a motion to the membership to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of theTMA149 By-Laws. This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters. Further to provide relief for our longest standing and most senior members the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

TMA149 Health Benefits

Further, although no rule changes were required, the Board of Directors wishes to clarify that all members who have been diagnosed with, or tested positive for, Covid-19 may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.

TMA149 and CFM Office

Our office is physically closed and we are working from home. Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please do continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions.
Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail for those planning a post-Covid tour.

Covid-19 Update Archive

We are archiving these updates here.

Resource List

We also wanted to repeat and add to our list of additional resources:

Again feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity, Michael Murray, Executive Director

Seeking Canada Recovery Benefit Clarification

Members have been reporting the following issues regarding the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB):

  1. For those that continue to earn some income, the requirement in any two week period that  “you worked and earned net income, but no more than 50% of your average two-week net income in 2019”.  Those that had low net income in 2019 are disadvantaged in the program and are limited in the earnings they can make while still qualifying.To address this issue, TMA149:
    • Has solicited examples from the membership to share with the Federal Government through our Federation.
    • Has asked the government, through our Federation, to consider the impact of such measures on the lowest earning individuals.
    • Continues to be involved in discussions about a Universal Basic Income in the arts.
  2. Members are concerned that they will have to prove loss of work to be eligible.To address this issue TMA149:
    • Has asked the Federal Government, through our Federation whether cancelled contracts and cancellations at any point in the pandemic will be sufficient.
    • Is still making available the lost work form on the member side of the TMA149 website to help members keep track of lost work.  Lost Work entries will be saved as part of your profile.
  3. Members are concerned that they are required to look for work in other fields while receiving the CRB.
    To address this issue TMA149:

    • Has offered the Federal Government, through our Federation examples of how musicians find work, and clarified how unlikely the Government of Canada Job Board is as a source for jobs for musicians.  We have proposed that evidence provided by a musician that they have inquired about jobs with leaders, contractors, engagers and / or looked on musicians’ job boards is sufficient for the purposes of proof of looking for work.

Making Sense of Reopening Rules

The Province of Ontario released its new “COVID-19 Response Framework: Keeping Ontario Safe and Open” on November 3, 2020 and it has been revised multiple times since that date.  Under the current version of the framework most of our local is scheduled to enter ‘Control (Red)’ classification by November 16, 2020.  In addition the Chief Medical Officers of the City of Toronto and the Region of Peel have made additional orders making the rules in those areas even more restrictive.

Here is a summary of the regions in our local and the level of restrictions as at November 16, 2020:

Protect (strengthened measures) – yellow:

  • Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit

Restrict (intermediate measures) – orange

  • Durham Region Health Department

Control (stringent measures) – red

  • York Region Public Health
  • Peel Regional Health Unit – with additional gathering, dining and closure restrictions
  • Toronto Public Health – with additional gathering, dining and closure restrictions

Further, TMA149 understands the following as it pertains to our membership, for all levels other than lockdown, including the additional measures in Peel and the City of Toronto:

  • Recording studios, concert venues, theatres and cinemas, as well as other spaces, can open for the purpose of rehearsing or performing a recorded or broadcasted concert, sound recording, film/television scoring, recorded artistic event or recorded theatrical performance provided that no spectators/audiences are present, and performers maintain physical distancing (with limited exceptions). In addition, when in Control (Red) status singers and players of brass or wind instruments must be separated from other performers by plexiglass or some other impermeable barrier.
  • For all other restrictions please review the new framework, the additional restrictions in Peel Region, and the additional restrictions in the City of Toronto.
  • Unfortunately the $300 million announced for businesses affected by restrictions requires that applicants had a CRA Payroll account on March 15, 2020 and therefore will not be suitable for many members.  TMA149 is reminding government that by-and-large they have left musicians out of this form of support.

Advocacy Update

TMA149 and the Federation continue to advocate for musicians in the following areas:

  • Advocacy that musicians are included in a fair and transparent reopening plan at the Province of Ontario and the municipalities and regions in our local.
  • That musicians fairly benefit through increased public investment in the arts & culture sector and through legislative changes at the Federal and Provincial level.

Proposed 2021 Covid-19 Dues and Related Relief

In response to the acute negative economic situation faced by TMA149 membership the TMA149 Board of Directors is proposing a number of dues and related relief amendments to the TMA149 By-Laws.  The proposed relief includes a reduction in discounted annual dues from $235 per year to $196 per year, and a number of other measures including the suspension of expelled status for as long as allowed for by our Federation. The proposals will be heard at the December general meeting, require approval of the members at that meeting, which all can attend, and require approval of our Federation’s International Executive Board.

Respectful Workplaces in the Arts Workshops

TMA149 is partnering with Cultural Human Resources Council to bring our members workshops on maintaining respectful workplaces in the arts.  The Cultural Human Resources Council (CHRC) project, Respectful Workplaces in the Arts, addresses harassment in the workplace, including sexual harassment, bullying, discrimination and violence. As a part of this initiative, this workshop will ensure that artists and arts organizations across Canada have the tools, resources and training to prevent harassment of any kind, and build respectful workplaces as the norm in the cultural sector.
For musicians identifying as Female and Non-Binary:

When: Nov 27, 2020 12:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Register in advance for this workshop:

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAsfuiupz4sGNe0zguwaYP4WyBABd2BBKwa
For musicians of all identities:

When: Dec 1, 2020 12:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Register in advance for this workshop:

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZEpcqvqDosHNH51Gs42qAmI4qVmG6wpwHf

 

Learn About Ontario Second Career Grants

You can get new skills – those needed for jobs in demand now – and financial support when you qualify for Second Career.

Apply for up to $28,000 for costs including:

  • tuition
  • books
  • manuals, workbooks or other instructional costs
  • transportation
  • basic living allowance (maximum $410 per week)
  • child care

Attend an upcoming free information session provided by George Brown College.

Ontario Together – Provincial Portal for PPE, Covid-19 Mitigation Ideas and Related Funding

The Province of Ontario has set up a portal to help businesses supply and source PPE, as well as receive ideas and proposals on how to mitigate Covid-19 while reopening the province.  There is $50 million in funding available for approved projects through the portal, and the province announced $300 million in support for businesses affected by the re-entry into Phase 2 in certain regions, including our region, of the province.  Additional details on how to apply for the $300 million announced are pending.

Ontario’s Community Building Fund

The Province is investing $100 million over two years to develop a Community Building Fund that supports community tourism, cultural and sport organizations, which are experiencing significant financial pressures due to the pandemic. These organizations support community engagement, tourism and recreation through a variety of attractions, experiences, events and activities. Funding support would be available to not-for-profit organizations and municipalities, and the program will be delivered by the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) with two streams:

  • Supports for local community tourism, heritage and culture not-for-profits, such as community museums, local theatres, fairs and cultural institutions, to help sustain their operations in the short term and create new attractions, experiences and events; and
  • Funding for municipalities and not-for-profit sport and recreation organizations to make investments in infrastructure rehabilitation and renovation, in order to meet public health protocols and local community needs.

Assisting Ontario’s Arts Institutions

The government is providing one-time emergency funding of $25 million for Ontario’s arts institutions to help cover operating losses incurred as a result of COVID-19. This funding will help these organizations remain solvent and prepare for a time when they can fully re-open their facilities, resume full programming and welcome back their visitors and audiences.

Reconnect Festival and Event Program 2020-2021 and Funding Reminder

The Province of Ontario announced the Reconnect Festival and Event Program to:

  • provide experiences that encourage people to travel locally and rediscover the beauty and diversity of their community
  • draw attendees and provide positive economic impact for the local community, the region and the province
  • create job opportunities for Ontarians, particularly in the tourism, culture and entertainment sectors
  • increase Ontario’s profile through media and/or broadcast exposure to generate interest in future travel to the province once it is safe to do so again

Remember that this program is additional to special and regular funding at Canada Council for the ArtsFACTOROntario Arts CouncilOntario Music Investment FundOntario Trillium Foundation and Toronto Arts Council.

Mental Health Supports

TMA149 wishes to remind our members of the mental health supports:

  • TMA149 Benevolent Funds – members who have mental health diagnosis may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Member Assistance Fund, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians. Log into the member side of the TMA149 website to find out more an access application materials.
  • Unison Benevolent Fund Counselling & Health Solutions – The Unison Benevolent Fund offers a toll-free number to connect Canadian music professionals with resources and support for personal and practical issues. This service is free, anonymous, confidential and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Before you make the call, please register with Unison. 1-855-986-4766.
  • ConnexOntario – ConnexOntario provides service information for people experiencing problems with gambling, drugs, alcohol, or mental health. Helpful, supportive system navigation specialists answer all calls, emails or web chat requests 24/7. Connex Ontario referral service is free and confidential. 1-866-531-2600 or Chat or Email.

 

P2 Visa Fee Changes

Back in April our Federation joined with partners across the United States to call for the relaxation of visa rules and fees to support response to and recovery from the Covid-19 Pandemic.  USCIS ignored this call and doubled down.  Currently the P2 Visa regular processing fee is $460 USD.  Beginning October 1, 2020 the processing fee was scheduled to increase to $695 USD.  As already reported by our Federation, due to the political action of immigration advocates in the state of California, the P2 Visa increase and various other changes to immigration into the United States have been put on pause pending legal action.

USCIS after receiving this decision did quickly move to increase premium processing fees.

We will keep you updated and our Federation has put together a committee to formulate an ask of both the Canadian and US governments to relieve the burden of border crossing fees and wait times.  TMA149 Executive Director Michael Murray is a member of this committee chaired by Federation  Vice-President from Canada Alan Willaert, and including Canadian Office Executive Director Liana White, Local 547 Calgary Secretary-Treasurer Doug Kuss and Local 161-710 Washington DC President Ed Malaga.

TMA149 and CFM Office

Our office is remaining physically closed for the time being and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions electronically, by mail or by courier.  Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail.

Covid-19 Update Archive

All Covid-19 Updates and other Covid-19 resources may be found here:
https://tma149.ca/covid-19-archive/.

Always feel free to reach out to TMA149 Board or office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity

October 10, 2020 Modified Stage 2 Reopening Rules

The City of Toronto and Municipality of Peel have been regulated to reenter a modified Stage 2 of the Province’s Reopening Framework, for a minimum of 28 days from October 10 to November 7, 2020.

This change is outlined in the following amended regulation:

https://www.ontario.ca/laws/regulation/200263

And summarized on the following website:

https://www.ontario.ca/page/reopening-ontario-stages#section-3

Further, TMA149 understands the following as it pertains to our membership:

  • Please see the letter from Kevin Finnerty, Associate Deputy Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries which clarifies:
    • The Ontario Government has amended Ontario Regulation 263/20 (Rules for Areas in Stage 2) to modify restrictions with respect to performing arts venues.These modifications for Stage 2 regions will permit concert venues, theatres and cinemas to open for the purpose of rehearsing or performing a recorded or broadcasted concert, artistic event or theatrical performance provided that no spectators/audiences are present, and performers maintain physical distancing (with limited exceptions). In addition, singers and players of brass or wind instruments must be separated from other performers by plexiglass or some other impermeable barrier.

      This amendment comes into effect on October 17, 2020.

  • No performances for the public are permitted at casinos, performing arts centres, racing venues, conference and convention centres or restaurants and bars;
  • Meeting & event spaces and wedding receptions are limited to 10 public attendees indoors and 25 outdoors;
  • Religious services, wedding services and funerals are restricted to the lower of 30% of capacity or 50 people indoors or 100 people outdoors;
  • Music lessons may occur inside with 10 or fewer students, maintaining social distance and other measures;
  • Drive-in events are not significantly impacted by the new rules;

Areas of TMA149 outside of the City of Toronto (Durham, Simcoe, Muskoka, etc.) remain in Stage 3.

Canada Recovery Benefit – Applications Now Open – Bi-Weekly Periods and Thresholds

The Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) has been enacted through legislation and is now open for application.

  • The Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) replaces the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) for all periods following September 27, 2020;
  • The benefit provides provides $1000 for each two-week period you are eligible;
  • 10% income tax is deducted at source, therefore the amount received in your bank account would be $900 for each approved period;
  • The benefit can be received, under current regulations, for a maximum of 13 two-week periods between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021;
  • Applications are made through your online CRA MyAccount. You must wait to apply until after the two-week period you are applying for has concluded;
  • You must apply within 60 days of the two-week period being applied for;
  • To qualify for the CRB for any two-week period, within the period you are applying for:
    • you had no earnings, and possibly net losses, due to COVID-19 and were available and looking for work
      or
    • you worked and earned net income, but no more than 50% of your average two-week net income in 2019.

      This means there is an obligation to keep records of earnings and expenses for each CRB period and know your average two week earnings in 2019  (total earnings reported on your 2019 tax return divided by 26 two week periods) and ensure that each two-week period applied for you have net earnings of less than 50% of your average 2019 two week net

  • Additionally if you report more than $38,000 in net earnings (earnings net of applicable expenses) on your 2020 tax return, for each dollar over that amount you will reimburse 50 cents up to the total value of the CRB collected that year.
  • The $38,000 threshold does include amounts received as part of the CERB, but not the new CRB.
  • Unlike the CERB, for the CRB all royalty payments received regardless of timing count towards thresholds.
  • Like the CERB, for the CRB, pension benefits received do not count towards thresholds.

There are additional eligibility considerations, including residency, that can be reviewed on the Government of Canada website.

Additional Benefits for Business – CEWS Extension and CEBA Increase

For members and their businesses that may be eligible for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA), the Government of Canada has announced additional support under both programs.  Specific legislation and / or regulations have not yet been put forward to make these changes.

Ontario Together – Provincial Portal for PPE, Covid-19 Mitigation Ideas and Related Funding

The Province of Ontario has set up a portal to help businesses supply and source PPE, as well as receive ideas and proposals on how to mitigate Covid-19 while reopening the province.  There is $50 million in funding available for approved projects through the portal, and the province announced $300 million in support for businesses affected by the re-entry into Phase 2 in certain regions, including our region, of the province.  Additional details on how to apply for the $300 million announced are pending.

Reconnect Festival and Event Program 2020-2021 and Funding Reminder

The Province of Ontario announced the Reconnect Festival and Event Program to:

  • provide experiences that encourage people to travel locally and rediscover the beauty and diversity of their community
  • draw attendees and provide positive economic impact for the local community, the region and the province
  • create job opportunities for Ontarians, particularly in the tourism, culture and entertainment sectors
  • increase Ontario’s profile through media and/or broadcast exposure to generate interest in future travel to the province once it is safe to do so again

Remember that this program is additional to special and regular funding at Canada Council for the ArtsFACTOROntario Arts CouncilOntario Music Investment FundOntario Trillium Foundation and Toronto Arts Council.

Mental Health Supports

TMA149 wishes to remind our members of the mental health supports:

  • TMA149 Benevolent Funds – members who have mental health diagnosis may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.
  • Unison Benevolent Fund Counselling & Health Solutions – The Unison Benevolent Fund offers a toll-free number to connect Canadian music professionals with resources and support for personal and practical issues. This service is free, anonymous, confidential and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Before you make the call, please register with Unison. 1-855-986-4766.
  • ConnexOntario – ConnexOntario provides service information for people experiencing problems with gambling, drugs, alcohol, or mental health. Helpful, supportive system navigation specialists answer all calls, emails or web chat requests 24/7. Connex Ontario referral service is free and confidential. 1-866-531-2600 or Chat or Email.

 

P2 Visa Fee Increase on Pause

Back in April our Federation joined with partners across the United States to call for the relaxation of visa rules and fees to support response to and recovery from the Covid-19 Pandemic.  USCIS ignored this call and doubled down.  Currently the P2 Visa regular processing fee is $460 USD.  Beginning October 1, 2020 the processing fee was scheduled to increase to $695 USD.  As already reported by our Federation, due to the political action of immigration advocates in the state of California, the P2 Visa increase and various other changes to immigration into the United States have been put on pause pending legal action.  We will keep you updated and our Federation has put together a committee to formulate an ask of both the Canadian and US governments to relieve the burden of border crossing fees and wait times.  TMA149 Executive Director Michael Murray is a member of this committee chaired by Federation  Vice-President from Canada Alan Willaert, and including Canadian Office Executive Director Liana White, Local 547 Calgary Secretary-Treasurer Doug Kuss and Local 161-710 Washington DC President Ed Malaga.

Aerosols Research

TMA149 member David Pell has assembled this useful resource on the various studies looking at the risk of Covid-19 as it pertains to wind and brass instruments, and the spread through droplets and aerosols, with some perspective on vocalists.

Suspension of Dues Penalties and Reinstatement Fees, Extension of Life Member Dues Deadline

In response to economic needs, our membership has passed a motion to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of the TMA149 By-Laws.  This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters.  We are able to make this offer until December 31, 2020 according to current Federation guidelines.  Please note members will still enter Suspended and Expelled status for unpaid dues, but the amount due to become a member in good standing has been lowered and relieved of penalties.  In addition, to provide relief for our longest-standing and most senior members, the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

TMA149 and CFM Office

Our office is remaining physically closed for the time being and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions by electronically, by mail or courier.  Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail.

Covid-19 Update Archive

All Covid-19 Updates and other Covid-19 resources may be found here:
https://tma149.ca/covid-19-archive/.

Always feel free to reach out to TMA149 Board or  office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity

To our Members,

LightUpLive

On Tuesday 22 September, 2020, an hour after sundown, we are inviting our members to join technicians, suppliers and venues across the country to light up live events in red – raising awareness for an industry that is still dark.

Please view the LightUpLive website for how to safely participate.

#iMissLiveTheatreTO

At this time of year, the theatre, dance and opera sector would typically be celebrating the launch of the 2020-21 season. Instead the industry continues to feel the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • While many parts of our economy cautiously begin to reopen, the performing arts remain largely dark – amongst the first to close and will be the last to re-open
  • The impact to date in Toronto is 25,000 cancelled or postponed public performances; $500 million lost ticket sales; 20 million lost audience members

To raise awareness of the effect of the pandemic on the theatre, dance and opera community in Toronto we are inviting our members to join audiences, arts workers and artists in celebrating our vibrant cultural landscape.

We need your support to encourage all theatre, dance and opera lovers to participate. The #iMissLiveTheatreTO campaign officially launches 10:00am, Monday, September 21 with a LAUNCH VIDEO to kick off the week via the TAPA YouTube channel.

TAPA has created 3 Easy Options for You to Join the #iMissLiveTheatreTO campaign!

MAKE A VIDEO

POST AN IMAGE

DISPLAY A POSTER

The Proposed Canada Recovery Benefit – Updated to $500 per week

The proposed Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) has now been included in legislation that received its first reading in the house today.  In the legislation, the benefit has been increased from the originally-planned amount of $400 per week to match the now ended CERB at $500 per week.  The benefit as described in current legislation:

  • effective from September 27, 2020, for one year and would provide a benefit amount of $500 (NEW) per week for up to 26 weeks;
  • eligible for up to 13 two-week periods where the claimant earns 50% or less of their average two-week income in 2019 or 50% or less of their average two-week income in the 12 months prior to application;
  • the 13 two-week periods may be increased by regulation, likely if the pandemic continues to prevent work;
  • self-employed income is explicitly net of expenses;
  • claimants would need to repay some, or all, of the benefit through their income tax return if their annual net income, excluding the CRB payment, but including the CERB payments from March until September 2020, is over $38,000. In other words, claimants would need to repay $0.50 of the benefit for each dollar of their annual net income above $38,000 in the calendar year to a maximum of the amount of benefit they received.

The full legislation after first reading (before any debate or changes) may be viewed here. The legislation may still be changed or the bill may not pass.  If the bill passes TMA149 will keep an eye on information about how our members apply and get questions answered.

Speech from the Throne – highlights for our sector:

You may download the entire text of the speech here.

“the Government will work to target additional financial support directly to businesses which have to temporarily shut down as a result of a local public health decision.”

“the Government will launch a campaign to create over one million jobs, restoring employment to previous levels…using a range of tools, including direct investments in the social sector and infrastructure, immediate training to quickly skill up workers, and incentives for employers to hire and retain workers.”

“One way the Government will create these jobs is by extending the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy right through to next summer. The Government will work with businesses and labour to ensure the program meets the needs of the health and economic situation as it evolves.”

“Over the coming months, the EI system will become the sole delivery mechanism for employment benefits, including for Canadians who did not qualify for EI before the pandemic. This pandemic has shown that Canada needs an EI system for the 21st century, including for the self-employed and those in the gig economy.”

“This fall, in addition to extending the wage subsidy, the Government will take further steps to bridge vulnerable businesses to the other side of the pandemic by:

  • Expanding the Canada Emergency Business Account to help businesses with fixed costs;
  • Improving the Business Credit Availability Program;
  •  And introducing further support for industries that have been the hardest hit, including travel and tourism, hospitality, and cultural industries like the performing arts.”

“Web giants are taking Canadians’ money while imposing their own priorities. Things must change, and will change. The Government will act to ensure their revenue is shared more fairly with our creators and media, and will also require them to contribute to the creation, production, and distribution of our stories, on screen, in lyrics, in music, and in writing.”

“Working with the provinces and territories, the Government will make the largest investment in Canadian history in training for workers. This will include by:
• Supporting Canadians as they build new skills in growing sectors;
• Helping workers receive education and accreditation;
• And strengthening workers’ futures, by connecting them to employers and good jobs, in order to grow and strengthen the middle class.”

“Important steps were taken with the release of Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy for 2019-2022, the creation of an anti-racism secretariat, and the appointment of the first-ever Minister focused specifically on diversity and inclusion. This is all good, but much more needs to be done for permanent, transformative change to take shape. The Government will redouble its efforts by….taking new steps to support the artistic and economic contributions of Black Canadian culture and heritage.”

Be Part of Changing the Performing Arts Industry. Take the Rosa Survey: The Change You Want to See

Aftermetoo, the Canadian Women’s Foundation, and Hill Strategies have released the first-ever national bilingual survey on workplace sexual harassment in the Canadian performing arts, film, and television industry. We want to hear your story. Safer workplaces in the performing arts industry are possible. The results of the Rosa Survey will be used to advocate for change. Take the Rosa Survey between September 21st and October 23rd.

Universal Basic Income

Universal Basic Income has become an important conversation for the arts in general and for political parties in Canada.  Our Federation signed the letter asking for the Government of Canada to implement a Universal Basic Income for the arts.

 

Federal Advocacy for Financial Support

Please see our Federation’s Written Submission for Federal Pre-Budget Consultations and Submission to Canadian Heritage. While Parliament is prorogued you can still contact your Federal Member of Parliament to discuss the above recommendations, or additional recommendations.

Provincial Advocacy for Financial Support and Reopening Rules

These are the highlights of the TMA149 Submission to the Provincial Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs

  1. Introduce a Live Arts Labour Tax Credit and a Live Arts Labour Rebate
  2. Work with major financial institutions and the federal government to Introduce a Live Arts Financing Program to complement the Live Arts Labour Tax Credit and a Live Arts Labour Rebate
  3. Research and consider incentivizes for Ontario Musician and Music Maker Participation in Screen-Based Productions that receive Ontario Cultural Media Tax Credits

TMA149 appeared before the Committee on Monday August 24, 2020 @ 5:00 PM.

TMA149 has also sent a submission to the Ontario Jobs and Recover Committee that the committee consider changes to Stage 3 Rules.
For clarity, our understanding is that the lowering of gathering restrictions on September 17 applies to unsupervised gatherings, whereas concerts and performances under the supervision of a venue, commercial producer, or community producer can remain at the original Stage 3 gather limits.

TMA149 has requested a meeting with Minister MacLeod to discuss both financial recovery and reopening rules along with a small group of working members.  The minister’s office responded that the Minister is willing to meet with TMA149 and the musicians within the next three weeks and we will report on that meeting.

Canada Emergency Business Account

TMA149 did not highlight the Canada Emergency Business Account early in the pandemic, as it was not a match for the majority of our membership.  Changes this summer make the loan program much more suited to many TMA149 members and we recommend you look into the program.

This $55 billion program provides interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits.

Repaying the balance of the loan on or before December 31, 2022 will result in loan forgiveness of 25 percent (up to $10,000).

As of June 26, 2020, businesses eligible for CEBA now include owner-operated small businesses that do not have a payroll, sole proprietors receiving business income directly, as well as family-owned corporations remunerating in the form of dividends rather than payroll.

United States Citizenship & Immigration Service Ignores the Federation and its Partners – Increases P2 Visa Fees

Back in April our Federation joined with partners across the United States to call for the relaxation of visa rules and fees to support response to and recovery from the Covid-19 Pandemic.  USCIS has ignored this call and has doubled down by increasing P2 Visa fees effective October 1.   We know this could not come at a worse time and we have not given up advocating for more reasonable artist immigration to the United States.

Currently and for all applications on or before September 29 the P2 Visa fee is $460 USD.  Beginning October 1, 2020 the processing fee is $695 USD.  The expected processing time is 60 days.  More information may be found on the Federation’s Canadian website, under work permits.

Also, our understanding is that those holding P2 Visas may be recognized as essential workers and may be able to cross the border for their work.  That being said the quarantine requirements in the destination and back here at home would apply and therefore would make many US engagements impractical.

Next Covid-19 Town Hall – Friday September 25, 2020 @ 11:30 AM

We are having our next Covid-19 Town Hall Friday September 25, 2020.  Please bring questions for fellow members and TMA149 staff about next steps in response and recovery.

Suspension of Dues Penalties and Reinstatement Fees, Extension of Life Member Dues Deadline

In response to economic needs our membership has passed a motion to to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of the TMA149 By-Laws.  This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters.  We are currently only able to make this offer until September 30, 2020 due to Federation restrictions, but we are in discussions to extend the offer.  In addition, to provide relief for our longest-standing and most senior members, the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

TMA149 Health Benefits

Further, although no rule changes were required, the Board of Directors wishes to clarify that all members who have been diagnosed with, or tested positive for, Covid-19 may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.

TMA149 and CFM Office

Our office is remaining physically closed for the time being and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please do continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions by electronically, by mail or courier.  Please note the Canadian Office of the Federation is open for electronic services and accepting P2 applications by mail for those planning a post-Covid tour.

Covid-19 Update Archive

All Covid-19 Updates and other Covid-19 resources may be found here:
https://tma149.ca/covid-19-archive/.

New Website, Member Login and Lost Work Form

We have launched our new website and you should have received an email back in June from “tma@bellnet.ca” with login details.  Please check your junk mail folder if you cannot find the email. Once logged in you can update your instruments and other information for our directory and enter lost work due to Covid-19 in a form that will produce a form for your records.  The lost work forms and information can be retrieved at a later time by logging in again.  If you are having any trouble with login please contact Dennis Passley, Membership & Contracts Coordinator dpassley@tma149.ca.

Always feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

March 15, 2020 – To our Members,

Covid-19 has brought about unprecedented times in our world and our industry is experiencing the full negative economic effects of the pandemic.

Along with our Federation and its locals, as well as sister unions and engager partners we are doing our best to:

  • Assess the damage;
  • Minimize the damage on our members wherever we can;
  • Develop an immediate ask of local, provincial and federal governments in supporting our sector and our members during the crisis and its recovery; and
  • Direct our members to resources available during these times.

As of this morning all of our Major Collective Bargaining partners have ceased performances until April, and many single engagement contracts have been cancelled. We are seeing nearly the same magnitude of decline in electronic media reports and contracts.  We have been in touch with all players committees and many leaders, contractors and engagers to help advocate for the best possible conditions for members in this circumstance.  Anyone needing assistance with cancelled engagements please do not hesitate to contact Business Representative Scott Harrison or myself to give advice and to help reach a best possible resolution for you and the members on the engagement.  We ask all leaders to keep and share documentation of lost wages and other hardships from cancelled engagements in order that we can appropriately record and respond to the crisis.

Regarding your union we are fighting through this for our members and at the same time have made a budget and plan that matches this new reality.  Our office remains open as we have sufficient space for social distancing, but we ask that all those who have traveled to affected areas and those that have any cold or flu like symptoms to access services by phone or email.

For all members, and we realize this will be the majority of our membership, who are experiencing income interruption, the following are resources are available to help you through what we hope is a brief pause in our industry:

Our board is considering our own role in assistance this week and we will be in constant communication in order to help each other through this difficult time.

In Solidarity, Michael Murray, Executive Director

Covid-19

March 19, 2020 – To our Members,
 
The Covid-19 pandemic continues to evolve and today we want to share what we understand of the relief available outside of TMA149.  We expect that tomorrow we will be ready to let you know more about TMA149 relief and an advocacy project intended to restore the live arts during and after this pandemic.
 
On March 18, 2020 the Government of Canada released more details on a $83 billion relief package, that already helps with some of the most pressing needs of our members, including support for independent and dependent contractors.

  1. The most immediate relief available is the ability for individuals to file their 2019 tax return by June 1, 2020 instead of April 30, 2020.  If you owe tax you will not have to make the first payment until August.  If you are due a return likely the best decision will be to file as early as you can.
  2. Immediately, small businesses, not-for-profits and charities may take 10% of their payroll up to certain maximums per employee, and per business, and reduce the amount of income tax they remit to CRA by that amount.
  3. Additionally there are loans available from the Business Development Bank of Canada for those who operate as businesses, and we understand that these loans will not leverage your personal assets.
  4. There are a number of measures that will be implemented in April and May, including increased GST benefit per child, increased Canada Child Benefit, and a moratorium on student loan payments.
  5. Also available in April and May is likely the most important supports for our membership as those who are deemed independent and dependent contractors may apply without having paid into Employment Insurance: The Emergency Care Benefit and the Emergency Support Benefit.  The Emergency Care Benefit supports those who are quarantined, sick, as well as those taking care of the quarantined and sick, and those taking care of children.  The Emergency Support Benefit supports those who have been gigging and where all gigs have been cancelled.
    • Applications are not yet open for either benefit as legislation must be passed, and therefore details may change.
    • However it is known that the applications will be processed through My Service Canada – it is highly recommended that if you are considering an application to these funds you set up, or access, your My Service Canada account now and ensure all of your information is up to date in order that you may apply as early as possible.

Our office remains open as we have sufficient space for social distancing, but we ask that members only visit the office if absolutely necessary, and not at all if you have traveled to affected areas or have any cold or flu like symptoms.  Instead please continue to access services by phone or email.
 
We will also wanted to repeat and add to our original list of resources:


Again feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests and I expect to be sending another email shortly outlining specific TMA149 relief and initiatives in response to Covid-19.

In Solidarity, Michael Murray, Executive Director

March 23, 2020 – To our Members,

I am getting back in touch with you to update you on TMA149 initiatives in response to the Covid-19 pandemic’s economic fallout on the live arts, government support that may be available to support you at this time, and a town hall to help keep members informed.First, you should have received an invitation to review and consider signing onto a set of asks of all levels of government under the title Save Live Arts.  You may review the asks and sign the petition at http://www.savelivearts.ca. I ask that you take ten minutes of your day to review this information and if you agree with the measures requested that you sign the petition.  The measures speak to immediate and long-term relief and you know better than anyone what a difficult journey this has already been and will continue to be for some time.

Many members have shared information about their list of cancelled gigs and we have been collecting that information, aggregating the data, and sharing where it has the most impact.  We are developing a new online form to collect this information.  You will receive a personal email in coming days asking you to sign up for an account on the new TMA website and enter your cancelled gig information.  There are many other surveys on this subject, please see the following offered by Music Canada as one example.

In response to the economic needs of our membership the Board of Directors of TMA149 has decided to make a motion to the membership to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of the TMA149 By-Laws.  This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters.

Further to provide relief for our longest standing and most senior members the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

Further, although no rule changes were required, the Board of Directors wishes to clarify that all members who have been diagnosed with, or tested positive for, Covid-19 may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.

Understandably there has been a lot of interest in the Government of Canada’s newly announced Emergency Support Benefit and Emergency Care Benefit.  Both benefits need to be enacted through legislation and few details have been released regarding the eligibility criteria or application process for either benefit.  We know that for the Emergency Care Benefit, for those who are sick or quarantined, those who are taking care of the sick, and those who are taking care of children, you will be able to apply though either the My Service Canada portal or the CRA My Account portal.  We do not know what, if any portal, will handle applications for the Emergency Support Benefit. We highly recommend that if you are considering applying for either benefit that you immediately ensure you have access to at least your CRA My Account.  We believe CRA My Account will be the easier of the two portals to access.

  • CLICK HERE to register for, or sign into, your CRA My Account, we recommend using the option of a sign-in partner which will allow you to use an account you sign into more frequently, such as online banking, in order to access your CRA My Account.

We are having a Town Hall this Wednesday March 25, 2020 @ 11:00 AM until 12:30 PM where you will be able to attend by phone or video conference and ask questions about Covid-19 (or really about anything TMA149 related) on the Zoom platform.  Please note that if the public health restrictions continue upcoming general meetings may be in this format and the Town hall provides a great opportunity to attend as a test run. The following are the access details for the Town Hall:

Topic: Covid-19 Town Hall – Toronto Musicians’ Association
Time: Mar 25, 2020 11:00 AM Toronto Join Zoom Meeting (Use this for simple videoconferencing)
https://zoom.us/j/176886476 Meeting ID: 176 886 476 Call In Numbers (for Phone audio on its own, or with computer video)
+1 647 558 0588
+1 647 374 4685
+1 587 328 1099
+1 438 809 7799
+1 778 907 2071 Meeting ID:
176 886 476 No need to enter a participant ID.

Our office is now physically closed and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possible. Those working please do continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions.

We will also wanted to repeat the list of additional resources:

Again feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity, Michael Murray, Executive Director

March 27, 2020 – To our Members,

In this latest update I will go through the Newly Announced Wage Subsidy and HST Remittance Delay, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, Other measures for Taxation, Housing, Emergency Funds, and link you to a recording of our Town Hall, as well as advocacy efforts through SaveLiveArts.ca.  This afternoon the government of Canada announced the intention to provide a 75% wage subsidy for small business.  As has been the trend, this initial announcement did not come with any detail for those of you who are business owners, or who may have questions about how this might impact your cancelled gigs.  We will update you when we know more. The government also announced today that they will allow businesses, including self-employed individuals, to defer until June 30, 2020 payments of the Goods and Services Tax / Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST). I believe top of mind for everyone is the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.  By the time relief legislation was passed regular Employment Insurance, the proposed Canada Support Benefit and the Canada Emergency Benefit were all rolled into one platform titled the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).  We still highly recommend that if you are considering applying for this benefit that you immediately ensure you have access to at least your CRA My Account.  We believe CRA My Account will be the easier of the two portals to access. We believe the applications will open April 6, 2020 and be retroactive until March 15, 2020.

  • CLICK HERE to register for, or sign into, your CRA My Account, we recommend using the option of a sign in partner which will allow you to use an account you sign into more frequently, such as online banking, in order to access your CRA My Account.

The following is the best information we have regarding the CERB:

Canada Emergency Response Benefit

The federal government has combined two emergency benefit measures that it announced earlier to provide support to individuals affected by COVID-19 into one new benefit, the CERB.

What is it?

  • The CERB is a form of income support implemented under the new Canada Emergency Response Benefit Act (CERB Act). This new benefit is not part of the Employment Insurance (EI) regime, and an eligible worker does not need to meet the EI insurable hours eligibility rules to qualify.
  • It applies to any four-week period falling within the period beginning March 15, 2020 and ending October 3, 2020 that an individual meets the eligibility criteria described below.

Who is eligible?

  • The CERB is available to employees and self-employed workers who:
    • have income of $5,000 or more from employment, self-employment, or pregnancy or parental EI benefits in the 12 months preceding the application for the CERB;
    • are at least age 15 and a resident of Canada;
    • “cease working for reasons related to COVID-19” for at least 14 consecutive days within the four-week period in respect of which they apply for the payment; and
    • do not receive, in respect of those 14 days:
      • income from employment or self-employment;
      • EI benefits; or
      • pregnancy or parental benefits under a provincial plan.
  • Although not specified in the CERB Act, the federal government’s COVID-19 website describes the following as workers who could be eligible for the CERB:
    • workers who are sick, quarantined, or taking care of someone who is sick with COVID-19
    • working parents who must stay home without pay to care for children who are sick or need additional care because of school and daycare closures
    • employees whose employment has not been terminated but who are not being paid and were asked by their employer not to work because of a shortage of work.
  • It appears that workers are eligible for the CERB whether they would qualify for EI or not.
  • The Regulations to be made under the CERB Act can specify types of employment income that will not affect the 14 day requirement. The government’s website indicates that the CERB is intended for workers who do not have access to paid leave or other income support.

How much is it?

  • The amount of the CERB will be specified in the Regulations. According to the government’s news release, the CERB is $2,000 per month for up to 16 weeks. It is taxable income.
  • It is not clear whether the monthly $2,000 payment will be pro-rated for a period without work between two and four weeks, but it does appear that it will not be payable if the worker is without work for less than 14 consecutive days in a four week period. It is expected that the Regulations under the CERB Act may clarify some of these questions once they are released.
  • We have heard it is possible the submission process may be simple and require little proof, with the burden of proof arriving later or upon income tax submission

When and how can workers apply?

  • The application is expected to be available online in early April, April 6 we believe.
  • Applicants are expected to receive their CERB payments within 10 days of application.
  • The CERB will be paid every four weeks and will be available from March 15, 2020 until October 3, 2020. It appears that a worker may need to reapply every four weeks until reaching the 16-week limit, assuming they continue to be not working due to COVID-19.
  • Application guidelines have not yet been released.

Other Measures

Taxation Benefits and Extensions

  • Individuals will not have to file their tax returns until June 1/20 and can defer any payments until after August 31/20 (however for some families may be advantaged to file earlier with respect to increasing child benefit etc.)
  • Ottawa will temporarily boost the Canada Child Benefit.- one time boost expected in May
  • In May, Ottawa will boost the GST credit (one time) to help lower income people, which is a tax-free payment sent to Canadians. “Every adult who qualifies will receive up to $300 with $150 for every child”-(amount may change)
  • For people paying off student loans, the government will put in place a six-month moratorium on repayment of their loans.
  • The government also announced today that they will allow businesses, including self-employed individuals, to defer until June 30, 2020 payments of the Goods and Services Tax / Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST).

Housing

  • No Evictions in Ontario -The Attorney General has indicated that no new orders will be issued and to postpone the scheduled enforcement of eviction orders.
  • Mortgages: The Federal Government, through the Canada Mortgage Housing Coporation (CMHC), is providing increased flexibility for homeowners facing financial difficulties to defer mortgage payments on homeowner CMHC-insured mortgage loans.
  • Access to Housing (Housing Connections) offices at 176 Elm St. are closed. Clients are encouraged to submit applications by fax, online or by mail. Information on Rent-Geared to Income Housing is available online (toronto.ca/accesstohousing) or by contacting Housing Help Centres.
  • Extensions for utility bill payments are in place
  • All city operated shelters, respites and 24-hour women’s drop ins remain open and support activities continue. Streets to Homes outreach is ongoing.

TOArtist COVID Response Fund

To assist Toronto artists in dealing with the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis, Toronto Arts Foundation and Toronto Arts Council are introducing the TOArtist COVID Response Fund. The Fund will allocate up to $1000 to self-employed, individual artists resident in Toronto whose creative work and income have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

TMA149 Initiatives

Save Live Arts

Please remember to consider and ask your contacts to consider signing onto a set of asks of all levels of government under the title Save Live Arts.  You may review the asks and sign the petition at www.savelivearts.ca.

Covid-19 Update Archive

We are archiving these updates here, and there are other resources listed:
https://tma149.ca/2016-01-26-02-05-12/press-releases/349-coronovirus-information-for-tma149-members

Recording of March 25, 2020 Town Hall

https://tma149.ca/2016-01-26-02-05-12/press-releases/349-coronovirus-information-for-tma149-members

Suspension of Dues Penalties and Reinstatement Fees, Extension of Life Member Dues Deadline

In response to the economic needs of our membership the Board of Directors of TMA149 has decided to make a motion to the membership to suspend all late fees, penalties and reinstatement fees found in Articles 14 1(c), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of the TMA149 By-Laws.  This means that if you fall behind on dues you will be able to bring your membership into good standing by simply paying for missing quarters. Further to provide relief for our longest standing and most senior members the Board of Directors has extended the deadline to pay for 2020 Life Membership from April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

TMA149 Health Benefits

Further, although no rule changes were required, the Board of Directors wishes to clarify that all members who have been diagnosed with, or tested positive for, Covid-19 may apply for support to the TMA149 Health Benefit and Extended Health Benefit, as well as the Federation’s Lester Petrillo Memorial Fund for Disabled Musicians.

TMA149 Office

Our office is now physically closed and we are working from home.  Although we are still accepting phone calls, mail and courier delivery, we ask that you access services by email whenever possibleThose working please do continue to send contracts, reports, dues and pension contributions.

Resource List

We also wanted to repeat the list of additional resources:

A number of other relief funds have been established for those and other Covid-19 Resources, please review this list put together by CARFAC. Again feel free to reach out to myself or any of our office staff with specific requests including regular business inquiries.

In Solidarity, Michael Murray, Executive Director

Artist and Cultural Worker Associations, Unions and Guilds met with Government to discuss CERB Eligibility Issues

 

Associations, unions and guilds (“associations”) representing over 75,000 artists and cultural workers from across Canada met virtually on December 17, 2020, with MP Julie Dabrusin (Toronto-Danforth), Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Matthew Gray, Policy Advisor to the Minister of National Revenue, and other representatives from the Department of Canadian Heritage and the Department of National Revenue. At issue, self-employed artists’ eligibility for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) and the recent letter over 400,000 Canadians received from Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

“We appreciate the time the government has taken to meet with us, share insights and answer our questions, but we still do not have general agreement on the eligibility of $5,000 income as gross or net of related expenses, and we would like the government to agree to gross earnings,” said Theresa Tova, ACTRA National Treasurer and ACTRA Toronto President on behalf of the associations. “Our members applied in good faith and we would like an official statement put out by government that eligibility will be based on gross income before cultural workers have to endure a difficult holiday season.

 

“The fact is many of the self-employed gig workers who have received these letters are among the most financially distressed people in our country,” Tova continued. “On average, artists’ annual earnings are between $12,000-$16,000 gross, and during the pandemic, when their secondary service jobs also disappeared, they continued to have significant expenses like any small businesses.”

 

The associations were seeking clarity and a change of CRA policy regarding CERB eligibility expressed in the CRA letter. The associations believe the published CERB eligibility requirement to show an income threshold was gross self-employment income, not net of expenses. While the meeting did not result in a commitment from the Government to change their policy or provide a clarifying public statement, a number of clarifications about the CRA letter were provided during the meeting.

 

According to Government officials at the meeting:

  • Canadians should know that the CRA letter is not a determination of eligibility, rather it was an early warning sign that the government did not yet have enough information to confirm their eligibility for CERB.
  • The government always said that recipients’ eligibility would be verified after the program’s conclusion. CRA is at the beginning of this process, which will unfold over the coming months.
  • Recipients who received the CRA letter may be eligible for the CERB, and in fact 2020 tax return information will help determine eligibility in many cases, but the CRA has not yet received that information.
  • The CRA issued the letters to allow recipients an opportunity to return amounts in case they find themselves ineligible for one or more CERB periods for which they received the benefit.
  • The timing of the letter and the December 31, 2020, target for returning funds were chosen to prevent impacts on 2020 tax returns and on other benefits such as the CCB or GST/HST tax credit. It is not a repayment deadline.
  • There will be no interest or penalties assessed as a result of a CERB recipient not repaying ineligible amounts by December 31, 2020.

The associations and Government left the meeting with a pledge to continue to work together to provide additional clarification for communities. MP Dabrusin invited Canadians to contact their Member of Parliament for additional information on this or any other potential government benefit or program to see them through the pandemic.

-30-

A complete list of attendees at the meeting is as follows:

 

From Government:

  • Julie Dabrusin, Member of Parliament for Toronto-Danforth, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage
  • Irene Cheung, Policy Advisor, Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage
  • Matthew Gray, Policy Advisor, Office of the Minister of National Revenu
  • Brendan Parsley, Parliamentary Secretary Assistant, Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage

 

From Artist and Cultural Worker Associations, Unions and Guilds:

  • Keith Martin Gordey, ACTRA National Vice-President and UBCP/ACTRA President
  • Theresa Tova, ACTRA National Treasurer and ACTRA Toronto President
    Lisa Blanchette, Director of Public Affairs and Communications, ACTRA National
  • Renuka Bauri, Canadian Arts Coalition
  • Steven Sparling, Associate Executive Director, Canadian Actors’ Equity Association
  • Sasha Sobrino, General Manager, CAPIC National
  • April Britski, National Executive Director, CARFAC
  • Jason Samilski, Executive Director, CARFAC Ontario
  • Maegen Black, Director, Canadian Crafts Federation
  • Kathleen Morris, Chair of Advocacy Committee, Canadian Crafts Federation
  • Aviva Fleising, Interim Managing Director, Canadian Dance Assembly
  • Alan Willaert, AFM Vice-President from Canada, Canadian Federation of Musicians
  • Liana White, Executive Director, Canadian Federation of Musicians
  • Ken MacKenzie, President, IATSE Local ADC 659
  • Emmanuel Madan, Director, Independent Media Arts Alliance
  • Michael Adam Murray, Executive Director, Toronto Musicians’ Association, CFM Local 149
  • Neal McDougall, Director of Policy, Writers Guild of Canada
  • John Degen, Executive Director, The Writers’ Union of Canada

 

 

Sanderson Branch Library

Notice of General Meeting

Friday December 13, 2019 General Meeting – 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
Sanderson Library Meeting Room in the lower level of Toronto Public Library
Sanderson Branch, 327 Bathurst St, Toronto, ON M5T 1J1 (Bathurst corner of Dundas).

The room is accessible by elevator.

Parking is available nearby at Toronto Western Hospital through the entrance off of Nassau St or at 53 Leonard Ave. Both lots are about a five minute walk to the library.

TTC Dundas Streetcar 505 from St. Patrick, Dundas West or Dundas Station, or Bathurst Streetcar 511 from Bathurst Station.

Refreshments will be served. $20 for attendees for parking or related expenses in attending the meeting.

The Copyright Board of Canada released its Decision on Tariff 22A concerning royalties for online music use.

To learn more, visit www.socan.ca and look under “Front Page News.”

Article by Charlie Gray

He was known as Doctor Music — or, around the Toronto music scene, “Doc.” In print, he was Doug Riley.

Photo credit: Don Vickery

Born in 1945 and raised in Toronto, having played the piano since the age of three, Doc graduated in music at the University of Toronto and studied at the Royal Conservatory of Music, then went on to do postgraduate work on the music of the Iroquois.

In his teens he played with the Silhouettes, a Toronto R&B band. In a 2006 interview with The Toronto Star, he said, “Ray Charles was my first influence, outside the boogie-woogie and stride pianists like Albert Ammons and Fats Waller.” In 1969, Doc was the arranger and keyboardist on Ray Charles’ album, Doing His Thing, on which Ray played organ, Doug played piano — and vice versa. Doug told me that when he was first called by Ray Charles to arrange and play on the album, he hung up the telephone — twice! The third call was from Rays manager who convinced Doc that the call was legitimate and not a friend playing a prank. He took the gig.

When Doc arrived at the airport, he was picked up by Ray and his chauffeur. They drove some distance, and arrived at a long driveway leading to Ray’s mansion. Abruptly, the chauffeur put on the brakes, got out of the car, and walked away. Ray Charles then took the wheel and drove the rest of the way. It was a favourite joke they enjoyed playing on new arrivals!

Doc was Music Director for Famous People Players for 20 years. During the same period he participated as arranger and musician on over 300 albums, in genres that went all over the map, and wrote hundreds of Jingles. Doug worked in or on productions with the Brecker Brothers, Measha Bruggergosman and Placido Domingo (arranging None But The Lonely Heart). He wrote three ballets for the National Ballet of Canada, scored six feature films, and played piano or organ with and/or arranged for Anne Murray, Jackie Richardson, John Roby, Danny B, Phil Dwyer, Bruce Cassidy, PJ Perry, Guido Basso, Bob Seger, Ringo Starr, Dione Taylor, David Clayton-Thomas, Tyler Yarema, Dianne Brooks, Motherlode, Gordon Lightfoot, Moe Koffman, Sonny Greenwich; he also recorded with the London Symphony Orchestra. Doug received Member, Order of Canada in 2003, also in 2003 Doug Riley and Guido Basso recorded a duo album A Lazy Afternoon.

From Guido Basso: “Doug Riley was a musical genius. His knowledge and ability encompassed a diverse range of musical genres from classical, ballet and opera to jazz, R&B and honky tonk. He was a brilliant composer, arranger, conductor and an inspired musician who could bring out the best in any kind of keyboard, from piano, to church or Hammond organ… and in any musician who worked with him. He was respected worldwide and his easygoing warm nature and ‘light up a room’ smiles are still sorely missed and fondly remembered by any who were fortunate enough to call him their friend.”

Through the 1970s, he founded and toured with the progressive jazz/rock band Dr. Music, which had Canadian hits. With Doc at its core, they recorded two albums: Bedtime Story and Sun Goes By. Other Riley albums include Dreams, From Canada With Love from 1976, and Freedom from 1990.

From Bruce Cassidy – member of Dr. Music: “Doug’s musical accomplishments are legendary, but his prowess was built on an insight into the building blocks of music and a love of life. His range of musical expression ran the gamut: from the raucous to the sublime, from the basic to the experimental. I enjoyed his respect as did everyone else who worked with him. I was floored by the care he took in the people he loved. Apart from the Dr Music incarnations, we played in each other’s jazz quartets and shared a fascination with the mystery of music making, musical curiosities and little known composers. I modelled my way with musicians after his… I miss you Doc.” Doc spent his last years composing at his home on Prince Edward Island and playing Festivals. Douglas Brian Riley died on August 27, 2007, while returning home from being a featured performer at the Calgary Blues Festival.

Toronto Public Library

Fall General Meeting

Friday October 27, 2017
11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
Northern District Library
40 Orchard View (Eglinton & Yonge) Room 200
Lunch & $20 per member for parking or other expenses will be provided

Johnny Cowell

Johnny CowellTMA149 Life Member Johnny Cowell has been referred to by the World’s International Trumpet Guild as one of Canada’s most outstanding Trumpet soloists. Johnny died surrounded by his loving family on January 22, 2018 in his 93rd year.

Johnny Cowell Memorial
Scarborough Bluffs United Church in the sanctuary on March 12, 2018 , at:
3739 Kingston Rd, Scarborough, ON M1J 3H4 – Kingston Rd @ Scarborough Golf Club Rd.

View Map

Ceremony is from 7:30 – 8:30.
There will be a social time with light refreshments after the ceremony.

The large parking lot can be accessed from behind the church by going east of Scarborough Golf Club Rd., turn right at the next street, Guildcrest Rd. At the stop sign turn right onto Crestwood Dr. which takes you behind the church to the parking lot.

In lieu of flowers, donations to the Heart and Stroke foundation would be appreciated by the family.

If so desired, online condolences may be made at www.oneillfuneral.ca. For full obituary please see https://necrocanada.com/obituaries-2018/johnny-cowell-2018/#.WmuDP6inGUk.

Ontario Logo

May 12, 2016

The Honourable Michael Coteau
Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport
900 Bay Street. Ninth Floor, Hearst Block
Toronto, Ontario, M7A 2E1

Delivered Electronically

Dear Minister Coteau,

The following is in response to the public draft of Ontario’s Culture Strategy. On behalf of our over three thousand professional musician members in the City of Toronto, Peel Region, Durham Region, York Region, Simcoe County, Muskoka District and Parry Sound District I would like to thank you and your team for your efforts to create this plan and your efforts to bring the cultural community and Province together under a unified vision for culture.

1. The draft vision for culture in Ontario and the principles to guide government support for culture reflect much of what is important to us.

a. In the vision the notion of value resonates with us as it is what drives our association. We work towards a society and workplace where all professional musicians are valued for their many contributions.

b. The notion of inclusiveness mirrors our larger mandate to treat each other with respect and dignity no matter what ethnicity, creed, sex, age, disability, citizenship, sexual orientation, marital status, family status, or national origin;

2. We especially appreciate and would ask for increased emphasis on economicdevelopment for individuals and communities, as the development of businesses, especially foreign-owned businesses often takes precedence in economic development conversations in the music sector.

a. Specifically, while we appreciate the increased support for the music sector through the Ontario Music Fund, we would like the Province to monitor and incentivize the fair payment of individual musicians as part of the delivery of the fund. We have had the experience that our members work for businesses supported by the fund has not increased since the advent of the fund. Our concern with government support and the work of government agencies in general, is advocating for a fair balance of investment in Ontario- based professional musicians, when compared to foreign-based services or non-artistic expenses and to partner with the Province to increase its vigilance in collecting and verifying this investment.

b. As a local of a trade union, our exclusion from being able to apply for support from OMF also hinders our ability to contribute strategically to Ontario’s culture sector

3. We are confident that Goal 2 – fuel the creative economy, will be successful, and we wish to point out the following areas that we see as especially strong, or in need of further attention for our members:

a. Despite our request to sit on the Ontario Live Music Working Group as a representative approved by the Canadian Federation of Musicians we have not been included and to our knowledge the group lacks any representation from associations dedicated solely to individual artists, or any arts sector unions. We would still be happy to represent on this group and help find more representation of individual artists and technicians working in the live music sector.

b. Our members are directly involved in the creation of film scores in Ontario for Canadian and world distribution and as such we would like to contribute to the discussions regarding film scoring and be included on the film and television industry advisory panel

c. It is especially exciting to hear that the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport will be working with the Ministry of Employment and Infrastructure as our single largest barrier to increased positive work environments for our members is our lack of inclusion as contract workers under the Employment Standards Act and the Labour Relations Act. Working with the Ministry of Employment and Infrastructure we are asking you to expand our inclusion either by changing the aforementioned acts as part of the Changing Workplaces Review or by updating the Status of Ontario’s Artists Act to include the content that helps govern relationships between cultural sector producers and distributors and the creative people that fuel their work.

d. Of course the strategy that most reinforces our work is that which states “engage federal, provincial and territorial culture partners on strategies to improve the socio-economic status of artists…” this is what we dedicate ourselves to every day and would be proud to partner in the pursuit of this goal. One immediate way to impact this goal, and perhaps another goal itself is for the Government of Ontario to commit to minimum fees for artists in all of its activities and the activities it invests in through the Ministry of

Tourism Culture & Sport and the agencies under the Ministry.

4. While we believe major amendments and additions to the Status of Ontario’s Artists Act are required, the idea of an Arts Policy Framework that at minimum outlines best practices for artist payment and other matters such as extended healthcare and retirement planning for artists is a major step in the right direction.

5. Lastly, understanding that the Province of Ontario has economic challenges the same as many jurisdictions in the world, and notwithstanding the stated goals to attract investment from other ministries and the private sector, we believe that increased public investment in the cultural sector through the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport and its agencies, especially Ontario Arts Council and Ontario Media Development Corporation, should be a separate and explicit goal in the strategy.

Through the draft we are already confident that the Government of Ontario recognizes the importance of a healthy cultural sector, and the importance of at least maintaining, if not improving the socio-economic status of artists. Considering the next generation of artists includes amazing creators and interpreters

from Ontario’s many cultural and Aboriginal communities, uses technology to create and disseminate in such a different way, and are vital to our future, it is so important that we do not lose, and instead gain ground for them and make life more livable for all artists in our great Province.

Please do not hesitate to call upon us for more feedback or as partners in the implementation of the strategy.

Sincerely,

Michael Adam Murray
Executive Director
Toronto Musicians’ Association

Local 149 of the American Federation of Musicians of United States and Canada

c. Ontario Legislative Assembly
Paul Miller, MPP, Hamilton East-Stoney Creek, Ontario NDP Critic, Tourism, Culture and Sport
Steve Clark, MPP, Leeds-Grenville, Ontario PC Critic, Tourism, Culture and Sport
Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture & Sport and Agencies
Maureen Adamson, Deputy Minister
Kevin Finnerty, Assistant Deputy Minister
Samantha Fox, Policy Advisor, Ministry of Tourism Culture & Sport
Peter Caldwell, CEO and Director, Ontario Arts Council
Karen Thorne-Stone, President & CEO, Ontario Media Development Corporation
American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada
Alan Willaert, Vice President from Canada, Canadian Federation of Musicians
Liana White, Executive Director, Canadian Federation of Musicians
Ray Dillard, President, Local 149, Toronto
Charlie Gray, Secretary, Local 149, Toronto
Robin Moir, Secretary / Treasurer, Local 180, Ottawa Francine Schutzman, President, Local 180, Ottawa David Knarr, Secretary, Local 226, Kitchener
Paul Mitchell, President, Local 226, Kitchener Steve Case, President, Local 276, Sault Ste. Marie Paul Leclair, Secretary, Local 276, Sault Ste. Marie Ted Peacock, Secretary, Local 279, London
Colin Stewart, President, Local 279, London Larry Feudo, President, Local 293, Hamilton Brent Malseed, Secretary, Local 293, Hamilton
Gordon Cleland , Secretary, Local 298, Niagara Falls Ryszard (Rick) Rybak, President, Local 298, Niagara Falls Allen Torrance, President / Secretary, Local 384, Brockville Grant Heywood, President, Local 418, Stratford
Stephanie Martin, Secretary, Local 418, Stratford Marg Conway, Secretary, Local 467, Brantford Kenneth Johnson, President, Local 467, Brantford Sue Moore, Secretary, Local 518, Kingston
Gene Richard, President , Local 518, Kingston Christopher Borshuk, President, Local 566, Windsor Lynne Wilson-Bradac, Secretary, Local 566, Windsor Garry Agostino, President, Local 591, Thunder Bay Norman Slongo, Secretary, Local 591, Thunder Bay
Eve Goldberg, Vice President from Canada, Local 1000

INTERNATIONAL CALL FOR BOYCOTT OF OSB RECRUITMENT AUDITIONS IN LONDON AND NEW YORK

The administration of the Brazilian Symphony Orchestra (Rio de Janeiro) is organising recruitment auditions in London and New York, respectively on May 16-18 and May 20-23, 2011, in order to replace unfairly dismissed OSB musicians.

Positions are open in the following sections: violin, viola, cello, clarinet, trombone and piano.

FIM urges musicians around the world to refrain from taking part in these auditions, as it would result in taking the jobs of their unfairly dismissed colleagues.

All FIM member unions are therefore requested to circulate this call to their membership, thus expressing their solidarity with the ongoing struggle of the Musicians Union of Rio de Janeiro, SINDMUSI.

Don’t hesitate to come back to us, should you need any further information about the above.

Yours in solidarity, The FIM Secretariat

International Federation of Musicians

21 bis, rue Victor Massé F-75009 Paris
Tel: +33 (0) 145 263 123
Fax: +33 (0) 176 701 418
E-mail: office@fim-musicians.com
http://www.fim-musicians.com

Jacques Israelievitch

Jacques Israelievitch is celebrating his twentieth and final year as Concertmaster of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra – the longest such tenure in the ensemble’s history.

Jacques IsraelievitchHe was born in France and made his debut on French National Radio at the age of eleven. He graduated from the Paris Conservatory with three first prizes at just sixteen, upon which he was a prizewinner at the Paganini International Competition. At age 23, Sir Georg Solti appointed Jacques Israelievitch to Assistant Concertmaster of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, making him the youngest musician in the orchestra. In 1978, after six seasons in Chicago, he became Concertmaster of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, a position he held for ten years prior to moving to Canada. He joined the Toronto Musicians’ Association in 1988.

As a conductor, Mr. Israelievitch has led the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Buffalo Philharmonic, Windsor Symphony Orchestra, and other ensembles in France, North America, and Japan. In 2005, he was named Music Director and Conductor of the Koffler Chamber Orchestra, the ensemble-in-residence at the Koffler Centre for the Arts.

He has recorded works by Ludwig van Beethoven and R. Murray Schafer with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, violin works by Edvard Grieg, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante. His CD “Suite Hebraique” was nominated for a Juno award. Other CDs include “Suite Enfantine”, “Suite Fantaisie”, “Suite Fran栩se”, and “Solo Suite”. Recently, he made a complete recording of the 42 Kreutzer Etudes, the first of its kind. The CD and the accompanying score have been praised internationally.

In 1999, Jacques Israelievitch and his son, Michael (a percussionist) formed the Israelievitch Duo. They have commissioned and premiered works by distinguished contemporary composers including Michael Colgrass, Srul Irving Glick, and Murray Adaskin. The CD “Hammer and Bow” is the Israelievitch Duo’s first full length CD. Upcoming releases include an all-French album with the Mirage Quintet for NAXOS Records and a brand new recording by the New Arts Trio, to be released in 2008.

Mr. Israelievitch is an accomplished chamber musician, performing with such distinguished artists as Emanuel Ax, Yefim Bronfman and Yo-Yo Ma. He is a founding member of the Toronto Symphony Quartet and is a Faculty Member of the University of Toronto and the Royal Conservatory of Music. During the summer, he teaches Violin Performance and Chamber Music at the Chautauqua Institution. He is also a member of the New Arts Trio, which has been in residence at Chautauqua since 1978.

In 1995, Israelievitch was honored by France with the title of Chevalier (knight) of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Order of Arts and Literature). In 2004, he was made Officier (Officer) of the Order.

The Toronto Musicians’ Association is proud to honour our distinguished member Jacques Israelievitch with the TMA Lifetime Achievement Award.

April 14, 2007
Jim Biros Comments on Status of the Artist Legislation

STATUS OF THE ARTIST LEGISLATION FOR ONTARIO

Following almost two years of artist and industry consultations, by the Ministry of Culture’s Status Of The Artist Sub-Committee, and the release of the Committee’s “Report On The Socio-Economic Status Of The Artist In Ontario In The 21st Century”, the Province of Ontario’s March 2007 budget contained a Status of the Artist Act that failed to address the needs of Ontario’s professional artists.

To say that the legislation was extremely disappointing is an understatement. The Status Of Ontario’s Artists Act, 2007 does not address collective bargaining rights, working conditions, protection for child performers, or any other economic and social benefits referred to in the 23 recommendations contained in the Committee’s report. The Government legislative undertakings contain no specific action with the exception of a proclamation that, “The first weekend wholly in June every year is proclaimed as Celebrate the Artist Weekend.”

What Ontario’s musicians and other artists will continue to work for and need is effective Status of the Artist Legislation which at the very least provides artists with the right to improve our economic, social and working conditions through collective bargaining.

Jim Biros, Executive Director

TMA Labour Day

Come join with fellow musicians and workers in the

2019 Labour Day Parade

September 2, 2019 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM

Meet at the Parade Launch @ 9:15 AM

Meet at Section 4 on University Ave between Queen and Armoury
Walking 4.4km – west along Queen St to Dufferin, then south to the Dufferin Gates of theEx where the parade disbands
Free Admission to the Ex for all who join, including partners, family & friends
Live TMA Member Marching Band
Free TMA Gear

Kirk MacDonald

Born in Sydney, Nova Scotia, Kirk MacDonald joined the Cape Breton Musicians’ Association at age 12, and made his first recording a year later.

Since moving to Toronto in 1997, he has performed on over 45 CDs, both as leader and sideman, and has participated in numerous national broadcast recordings for CBC Radio. He has performed extensively throughout Canada, as well as in the USA, Spain, France, Italy, Holland, Monaco, Australia, Korea, Bermuda, and the Bahamas. Over 90 of his compositions appear on 22 CDs, of his own and of other artists.

Kirk has built an extensive body of jazz reflecting both tradition and innovation, and has built a solid reputation as a player, having performed or recorded with leading musicians from all over the world. In 1992 he was declared Winner at the prestigious 4ème Concours International de Solistes de Jazz in Monaco; he has been nominated for National Jazz Awards Saxophonist of the Year three times, among many other nominations and accolades.

An educator for 27 years at jazz studies programs such as the University of Toronto and McGill, he is presently a full time professor at Humber College in Toronto. A member of the Toronto Musicians’ Association since 1979, he has received 11 Juno Awards nominations, winning in 1999 and again in 2015, for Vista Obscura.

The Toronto Musicians’ Association congratulates Kirk on his recent Juno, and we are delighted to acknowledge him with our highest honour — our Lifetime Achievement Award.

Kristofer Maddigan

“Definitely not. This is way out of my comfort zone.”

A graduate of the Glenn Gould School, where he studied with John Rudolph and David Kent, Kristofer Maddigan is principal percussionist of the National Ballet Orchestra, and performs with a wide range of groups including the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the Hannaford Street Silver Band, and the Esprit Orchestra. But he had never written a three-hour big band score for a video game – until two long-time friends aked him to do just that. They persisted, he relented, and the resulting game, Cuphead, was a major hit that sold a million copies within two weeks of its release and was one of the top new games of 2017.

Cuphead received many nominations for its score, including most recently being named Best Music at the BAFTA Games Awards. But there’s no doubt that it’s more than a typical game soundtrack; it was released as a deluxe four-LP vinyl box set, spent thirteen weeks on the Billboard Jazz charts, and received a Juno nomination for Instrumental Album of the Year.

Visually, Cuphead is inspired by cartoons of the 1930’s, and the score echoes the same era. Its Ellington and Joplin-inspired tracks feature some of Canada’s top jazz musicians – a total of 42 musicians performed on the soundtrack, including featured soloists John Johnson, Alex Dean, Mike Murley, Steve McDade, and Al Kay. Kris credits the assistance of John Herberman, saying, “He taught me everything I know,” and says of game developers Chad and Jared Moldenhauer, “It was they who quit their jobs and remortgaged their homes to finance the making of the game, and it was also they who shared (importantly) paid for our dream of hiring real musicians.”

The Toronto Musicians’ Association salutes Kris for his remarkable accomplishments and is delighted to name him our Musician of the Year for 2017.