June 22, 2017


Present: Colleen LaHaise (Chair), Ruth Hayward (Treasurer), Elaine Brown (Secretary), Diana Hopkins-Rosseel (President), Jerry Weller, Janice Dendy (Assistant Artistic Director), John Rosseel, Andy Rush (Artistic Director)

Guests: Allie McMillan (Queen’s student candidate), Pam Bandy-Dafoe (Potential new Board Member)

Regrets: Wendy Stewart and Linda Williams

Chair: Colleen LaHaise

Location: Home of Colleen LaHaise

Minute Taker: Sherry Aylesworth

Meeting called to order 7:06 p.m with introductions of guests Allie McMillan (potential student conductor internship for fall) and Pam Dandy-Dafoe (potential Board member)

Agenda Items:

1. Approval of Minutes of May 13, 2017: Approved

2. Financial Report – (Ruth) Refer to Treasurer’s financial reports for more details.

  • Additional cost added for rental of a cube van to bring risers to greenhouse for outreach gig in May
  • Education- $100- for Choralpalooza.
  • Cost for musicians included 3 concerts, dress rehearsal and hiring of Stu Pike
  • Resale materials high-to cover cost of CD cover and errors to the CD cover
  • Insurance was missing on report- Ruth will check into this- should state $1300.00
  • Next year’s budget- Andy indicated this line might be higher for additional music education workshops
  • There is currently a budgeted surplus of $477.00
  • Diana suggested that the Open Voices Mission statement be revisited. In the past Open Voices made charitable donations. She wondered if there could be room in budget to donate money once again and wondered if it was possilbe to estimate future ticket sales in relation to venues. It was suggested that matinees could be priced at $15.00 and evening concerts at $20.00 as evening concerts tend to sell out. Extra revenue could then be used to donate to charities.This topic tabled for further discussion.
  • It appears that the choir may be in a deficit budget for next year.
  • The donations line is zero. There was a debate about whether choir members could be invited to make donations for capital expenditures in future and if OV should solicit donations from the community. It was suggested that a way to encourage community donations is to acknowlegde donators publicly in the concert program as a contributors to the choir. The topic on choir and community donations to be tabled for futher discussion.
  • Colleen suggested the board look at applying for a community grant to cover some of the costs for the Children’s concert next June at the Grand Theatre. Dan Corbett, Diana and Andy could help Colleen with a grant proposal. Sherry suggested approaching 100 Women and The Awesome Project for donations.

3. Concert Committee: (Colleen)

Member feedback:

  • Linda collected member feedback forms and will compile feedback into a report in August. Andy will pick up the member feedback forms, review and pass on to other board members. It was noted that two pieces of feedback stood out. The first being that many choir members stated they appreciated getting all the music required for concerts at the start of each term. Secondly, choir members really appreciated the practice materials being available right at the begining of each term with on-line tracks and the Note Flight parted tracks that Graham created.

Admin details and things that worked this past year:

  • Limiting emails to one per week kept email traffic down.
  • Janice to continue to email musical practice targets for each week to Artistic Director so that members can use that information to pratice in advance. Andy is hoping that the support the artistic directors received this year will be available to him as well. Janice agreed to continue in a supportive role. Andy will attempt some of the new procedures put in place this past year with the request of some flexibility.
  • It was suggested that there be a member from each section to assist in inputing notes into noteflight.

2016-17 Publicity Report: (Jerry)

  • Jerry is to be commended on the creation of a spectacular, professional, printed document of his work on publicity/promotion! His report was broken down into a historical account including steps and resources relating to concert promotion. This document would be a great tool used by future board members and concert committee members.
  • Pages 13 to 26 refer to publicity steps for future concerts with free publicity venues.
  • The posters this year were very attractive and eye-catching and are included in the report. Pages 8-10 refer to the posters and how they were chosen and used.
  • Pages 6 and 7 included distributors and senior’s residences. The senior’s residences and store managers were very helpful in promoting the concerts.
  • Suggestion for future: to create a buzz with a tag-line for each concert. Key buzz words could be used on posters and in promotional materials. It was suggested that these buzz words could be written on outside of ticket envelopes for vendors in hopes they would use them as a talking point about the concert.
  • Jerry pointed out how important it is to name the ticket distributors on each piece of promotional material, write ups and publicity.This may encourage their loyalty and committment to sell tickets.

Action: Jerry and Andy to meet during summer to do some pre-planning related to promotion for upcoming concerts.

Action: Diana to have hard copies of Jerry’s printed promotion package to share at AGM.

4. Music Committee: (Diana)

Action: Andy and Diana to discuss when to book music committee meetings for next year.

5. Outreach group: (Ruth)

  • Ruth indicated that everyone who attends the outreach gigs have found them very enjoyable. John Thomas has done a great job organizing the music. John and Liz are on leave this year but are still wanting to be involved with outreach.

Action: Need to confirm who will coordinate the venues and events. Is Allen McChesney still interested? Could Music Committe Liason and Artistic Director be the liason with the person who coordinate the outreach group?

5. Library report:

Storage space reorganization/Library committee – (Andy)

  • A large group of volunteers came out to assist with sorting music from this term which made the work go much more quickly than anticipated.
  • There is a concern that Open Voices is over using storage space at the church. There are two concerns; storage of music and choir members storing their personal items in church storage room. There are 16 or 20 banker boxes of music that will need to go into long term storage. Nancy Mohan offered to store some music at her place. It wass suggested that music that may be used again be kept for historical purposes for future use. Should some music (ex., specific guest artists) be pitched? It was also suggested that Coffee house and party materials be stream-lined to fit into one rolling cart.
  • John noted that it was very useful to have all the titles of all Open Voices music on file. The choir directors this term found this very helpful in making their musical selections.

Action: Andy to speak with Nancy Mohan concerning her offer for storage.

Action: Wendy and Andy to meet with church to discuss storage space.

Action: An announcement to be made at beginning of fall term to ask members to remove their personal items.

Action: Andy will remove old library table materials.

Podium painting:

Diana suggested the colourful podium ineeds to be repainted and wondered if it could be put on wheels or should a new dolly be purchased. She noted that moving it in and out of storage for use in concerts and rehearsals is causing wear and tear and also that it is awkward to move. Some suggestions were to get someone to design a system to put wheels on bottom and/or additional new handles for ease of movement.

Action: Andy and Diana to meet and brainstorm solutions and/or find a volunteer who could design an easy method of transport.

Action: Diana has volunteered to re-paint the podium.

Bose Equipment:

Andy has the Bose equipment at home. The manual is missing. It was thought Sean S. or John Armstrong might know of it’s whereabouts.

6. Board Recruitment:

  • Pam Bandy-Dafoe is putting her name forward for a position on the board. Currently the board is 2 members short for next term. The current board has worked hard to actively recruit members but is having little success. There is a concern the board might only consist of 5 members next year. This would make a lot of work for those members. There was some debate on why members are not coming forward

to sit on board and how to encourage members to take a role.

Action: Diana will send out an announcement with AGM materials and a notice about current situation and the need for 2 more new board members. The message could include a positve statement about how fun and a rewarding an experience being a board member can be and also the impact of less board member on the functioning of the choir.

7. Membership Report

  • Elaine has done an excellent job with membership. Numbers returning- 25 altos, 25 sopranos, 23 tenors, and 21 basses with 4 members on leave. The total registered is 94. Currently there are 5 men and 9 women expressing an interest in choir. The lottery starts on June 23rd and ends July 15th. Elaine will send out an expression of interest form to the Board.
  • Janice and John reported that the sound of choir from this past year indicates a need for more strong Soprano 1’s, male tenors and altos. John felt the Bass section is very strong.
  • Andy would like to ensure we have 100 on risers. The numbers of registrants and final numbers of choir members often changes and decreases as season starts. Thus Andy indicated that the board recruit 20 new members. Affirmative action will be used in bringing members into the choir and in promotion. It was suggested that recruitment be done using advertisement with posters, on OV website, at Queens,

St. Lawrence College, high school music teachers, churches, and to areas with marginalized community members. Transportation could be provided to lesson any barriers.

Action: Promotion for recruitment needs to start immediately. Andy, Elaine, Jerry and Ruth to work on sub-committe for promotion. Elaine to scan existing advertisement and send it to Andy and Jerry. Andy will send out an email with feedback from Elaine to go out to membership tomorrow. They will then email Jerry who will create a poster.

Action: Discuss attendance and membership issues at August meeting.

8. Next Season:

  • AGM: To be held on September 13th at Cookes United Church at 7 pm. Diana will organize AGM materials. Reports at AGM need to be concise. Summary of the year to include 5 key highlights from the year. Reporting will be Musical leadership, Treasurer, Artistic Director, and a brief highlight of the Promotion booklet created by Jerry. The President will run the AGM.
  • Peace Quest- Isabel Bader on Saturday, November 11th at 7 pm. This will be a 20 minute performance.
  • January Concert: Open Voices Goes Latin– Saturday January 27th, dress on the 20th , at Cookes with a matinee at 1:30 and evening concert at 7pm.
  • Tuskegee Choir from Georgia- Famous, Spiritual Choir on Sunday March 4th at St. Andrew’s Church with workshop at 2 pm and concert at 7 pm. OV members to help at concert and host choir provides full evening meal.
  • Spring concert- Possible themes could be Open Voices Animated or Kids Take Over the World. Concerts on Wednesday June 6th at Grand Theatre with a matinee at 12:45 or 1:00 pm and an evening at 7:00 pm. This will include pieces from animated films and could be used as a kids empowerment event.

9. Additional agenda items: Board pot luck on July 4th at 6pm at Colleen’s place at Lemoine Point Farm. Colleen looking for volunteers to help her set-up and clean up. Spouses are invited, extra lawn chairs needed.

  1. Next meeting date: to be determined at Board pot luck on July 4th- meeting ajourned at 9:00 pm
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