Brett UmlaufThe Musicians Foundation is focused on solving problems. Less than two years after a fire and Hurricane Sandy turned Brett Umlauf’s life upside down, she is making headlines with her cutting-edge opera performances. The Musicians Foundation was proud and pleased to see these rave reviews in the Wall Street Journal and New York Times:

Wall Street Journal
http://online.wsj.com/articles/opera-review-here-be-sirens-and-as-one-1410215142
New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/08/arts/music/here-be-sirens-a-little-philosophy-included.html?_r=0

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

 

Spencer Myer has joined the Musicians Foundation Board of Directors. Mr. Myer was previously a member of the Foundation’s Advisory Council. His artistic contributions to the music community and commitment to helping performers, educators, and composers in times of need make him an ideal addition the the Board.

Spencer Myer is an internationally renowned concert pianist who is a frequent guest artist with numerous orchestras, recital and chamber music series, and music festivals throughout the world. He has collaborated with dozens of celebrated artists, and currently serves on the Piano and Collaborative Piano faculty at the Longy School of Music of Bard College.

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.