Martin Bookspan, the renowned announcer, commentator, author, and member of the Musicians Foundation Board of Directors (1981-2009) passed away at the age of 94 on April 29, 2021. He spread the joy of music as a broadcaster for programs including Live from Lincoln Center and Live from the Met. He was also a writer and journalist with an extensive knowledge of classical music.

“Martin Bookspan served as a voice for music and musicians for over four decades as a member of the Board of Musicians Foundation.  His support of musicians and their families in times of need and crisis was generous and heartfelt.  On behalf of the Board, I send our condolences to his family and friends.  His wise counsel will be sorely missed.”  
– B. C. Vermeersch, Executive Director 

In an effort to stay transparent and keep musicians informed about our process, here is some information about our traditional grant, which just reopened for new applications.

To qualify, you must:
  1. Have earned the majority of your income for five or more years of professional experience as a performer, composer/arranger, or music educator.
  2. Have filed federal taxes during those five years (at the minimum). In our application, you must upload a copy of a recent tax return.
  3. Be applying for a reason beyond loss of work or unemployment. Our traditional grant is not a COVID-19 assistance program. To be eligible, you must be applying for a reason other than having lost or cancelled work. Typically, this means you or a family member has an expensive medical or dental bill, are facing eviction, have been impacted by a natural disaster, or have some other unexpected hardship (not unemployment).
Our traditional grants help pay rent and mortgages, medical and dental bills, and other essentials. All eligible musicians who apply and qualify receive assistance. There is no competition for our aid grants. Grants are sent in the form of vendorized checks, made out directly to the biller. For example – if you are applying to get help paying a medical bill for shoulder surgery, the grant (check) would be made out the the doctor or hospital. Our grants typically range from $500-$3000, depending on the situational need and our budgetary capabilities. We do not provide grants for travel, recording or production, or education / scholarships. If you received a CV19 Emergency Grant from Musicians Foundation in the past year, you can still receive a traditional grant, if eligible.
We are here for musicians, so please email applications@musiciansfoundation.org, or call 212-239-9138 with any questions!

“Through These Times,” a song by Con Fullam, was written to bring attention to the current, difficult situation for professional musicians. Following closures of all venues and recording studios due to COVID-19, musicians lost all their work and many had no safety net. Musicians Foundation established its CV19 Emergency Relief Aid Grant Program to provide fast, direct financial assistance to professional performers, educators, and composers. Since mid-March 2020, the Foundation has sent nearly 1,500 grants to musicians across all genres throughout the United States. To make a contribution after hearing “Through These Times,” please visit https://www.musiciansfoundation.org/through-these-times/ and follow the donation instructions at the bottom of the page.

I wrote this song because I have many close friends and fellow musicians who are suffering financially from this pandemic and, like all of the artists who donated their talents to this project, I hope to encourage folks to make a contribution to keep the music alive. Anything you can give is immensely appreciated. With gratitude, Con Fullam


This Juneteenth and always, we stand with Black performers, educators, and composers working in all musical genres. To us, music is a sacred, artistic, and uniquely human expression, and the discrimination arising from systematic racism serves only to limit and oppress that expressive ability. The tremendous impact of Black musicians is an undeniable feat and a testament to their artistry and strength. Musicians Foundation has been assisting musicians and their families in need since 1914. As we continue to expand our presence, services, and mission during these challenging times, we welcome feedback as to how we can better reach musicians in all of our communities of color.

Hans Eric Tausig was born on August 23rd, 1931 in Frankfurt, Germany. The only child of Victor Erich & Bertha Ahrenholtz Tausig, he survived the Anschluss in Vienna, the Kindertransport to Holland and fled occupied Europe with his parents to find refuge in the United States. They settled in Peoria, Illinois where Hans graduated high school in 1949. He moved to New York City and initially attended NYU, then ended up volunteering for the US Army during the Korean Conflict. He served in the Army from 1951-1954. His tour of duty included “Operation Castle” at Bikini Atoll. Following the Army, Hans returned to the East Coast to work in the chartering department of American Union Transport in New York City.

Ultimately hired by Philip Brothers/Engelhard to run Metal Transport, their international shipping conglomerate, Hans remained there for 30 years. When he left Engelhard, he formed his own shipping company: Nantucket Navigation. In his business and personal life, Hans always placed great emphasis on honesty and ethics.

After retirement, Hans worked for 2 years as the General Manager of New York Grand Opera.  He then went back to school, earning his Bachelor’s Degree from Adelphi University and a Masters in English Literature from NYU.

Music played a strong role in Hans’ life. An accomplished violin & viola player, he joined several orchestras; including a memorable tour of Hungary and Romania which were still behind the Iron Curtain.  Hans’ major interest was chamber music, which he played privately and publicly for the majority of his life. A season ticket holder at the Metropolitan Opera and Carnegie Hall, Hans delighted in attending operas at the great music halls around the world.

He was President of the Musicians Foundation in New York for over 20 years. Additionally, he was President and part-time auctioneer of the Violin Society of America, founding Board Member and President of The Rare Book School at the University of Virginia, member of the Bohemians, and member of the Grolier Club.

With his wife Eva-Maria, he founded and served on the Board of the Nantucket Community Music Center. He was a life member of the Nantucket Historical Association, the Maria Mitchel Association, and the Nantucket Lightship Basket Museum. His memberships in the Artists’ Association of Nantucket, the Nantucket Athenaeum, and the Nantucket Yacht Club brought him great joy. He served on the Board of the Nantucket Conservation Foundation for many years and held an advisory position at the time of his death.


Donations to Musicians Foundation may be made in honor of Mr. Tausig.




Remembering Bob Kuehn

January 20, 2020

Robert Kuehn (1931 – 2019) came to New York City in 1953 to study at the Juilliard School where he received a master’s degree in voice.  In his long career as a baritone, he sang everything from Gregorian chant to George Gershwin, performing as a soloist, ensemble and choral singer.  He performed with the widest variety of wonderful musical organizations, including the New York Pro Musica, Waverly Consort, NY Philharmonic, Musica Sacra, and Music Before 1800 among others. For four decades he was a member of the small professional choir of Corpus Christi Church and sang there as recently as the beginning of 2019.  For over forty years, he was a board member of The Bohemians, our founding organization, and a supporter of Musicians Foundation.

Bob was a good friend and a great supporter of our mission to help musicians in times of need and crisis.  We express our condolences to his family and friends and want to highlight his contribution to musicians.
– B.C. Vermeersch, Executive Director

  • 1
  • 2