October 8, 2019

Open Voices Board of Directors

Minutes of Meeting
Tuesday, September 10, 2019
7:00pm, 46 Colborne St

Present: Sylvie DesHaies, Pam Bandy-Dafoe, Mary Gauthier, Alan Kary, Graham Stratford,
Linda Williams (chair), Andy Rush
Regrets: Janice Dendy, Jerry Weller
Scribe: Alan Kary

  1. Welcome: Linda called the meeting to order at 7:03
  2. Approval of Minutes: The minutes of September 10, 2019 were approved as distributed.
    a. ACTION: Alan to post minutes of Board meetings to web page.
  3. Additions to agenda
    a. Membership resolution
    b. Spring 2019 feedback response
    c. Salil Subedi visit
    d. Tate concert video – next steps
  4. Membership
    a. MOTION: that, in accordance with Article 2.1 of the Open Voices Community
    Choir by-laws, all those on the attached list be accepted as members of the
    Open Voices Community Choir for 2019-2020. (passed by consensus)
    i. By Bylaw 2.3, unless a member resigns from the Choir, their membership will
    expire at the end of the AGM following admission to membership.

b. Andy reported that he’s been looking at attendance lists and noted that early errors
in the lists are being corrected. About 104 members are regularly showing up (out of
115 on the roll).

  1. Financial report
    a. Financial Statements
    i. Documents attached
    ii. Pam had little to add to the statements. Membership income is now in but
    there have been few expenses yet this season.

b. The term deposits (2 x $5000) are up for renewal on Oct 18. A Board decision is
i. The current 1 year rate is 1.45%. If the deposit is $10,000 or greater and is
left for 24 months the rate is 2.2%.
ii. In past years, the Board has decided to renew for one year at a time.
iii. Following discussion about the potential uses for these funds, and the
flexibility that two, one-year term deposits allow (as opposed to locking in a

single $10000 deposit for two years) the Board decided by consensus to
continue past practice by renewing two $5000 term deposits for one year at
an interest rate of 1.45%.
iv. ACTION: Pam to do what is necessary to renew the two $5000 term
deposits for one year at an interest rate of 1.45%.

  1. Discussion about singing off book:
    a. Clarification of intention of this initiative (Andy)
    i. Andy spoke about the benefits and advantages of singing a greater
    percentage of our next concert “off-book” including:
  2. Performance confidence (stop staring at binders, learn to make
    mistakes , etc.)
  3. The way that looking up and around allows the choir to sing together
    rather than individually.
  4. Many aspects of performance can’t be achieved (dynamics, nuance,
    etc.) until after a song is learned by memory. Difficult to get there
    when so many continue to rely on binders.
    ii. The hope is that the experience will be positive and allow us to do some
    things musically that we couldn’t do otherwise.
    iii. Very importantly, Andy clarified that the intention is not that OV would
    become an off-book choir but that for this term we could try to perform a
    significant proportion of our repertoire “not staring down at our binders.”
  5. There will be some on-book songs but most of the January concert
    will be off-book.

b. update of the discussion in Music Committee (Alan, Andy)
i. Music Committee met on October 2 and discussed strategies to help make
the off-book project a positive experience for choir members, including:

  1. Early-in-the-term distribution to members of parted practice tracks on
  2. Andy / Janice teaching strategies (chunking of learning and getting
    chunks off-book and then putting the pieces together)
  3. Andy / Janice mouthing words and focus on bringing in each section.

c. Solutions, actions needed
i. Actions to implement Music Committee ideas
ii. Kim to speak at Choir on October 9 re benefits of off-book performance
iii. Gord McDiarmid to be asked to present, on behalf of Music Committee
and Board, a clarification of the intention of the off-book experiment and the
Board’s intentions to provide supports to members to make it a success for

  1. ACTION: Alan, who will not be present at Choir on October 9, to
    prepare a draft text and approach Gord to do this.
  2. Frontenacs game
    a. OV has been approached to perform the national anthem and do a hallway show at
    the Frontenacs game on October 25. Andy says we’ll prepare 6 or 7 tunes for the
    hallway pre-game and between the first and second periods of the game.
    b. Andy will ask for a show of hands at Choir on October 9 to confirm viability.

c. The Frontenacs will kick-back $2 from each ticket sold to the Choir. General
discussion about potential uses for this money resulted in informal decision to use it
to support the Choir’s fun / education activities.

  1. Spring 2019 feedback response
    a. Many items raised were specific to the Spring term and not amenable to general
    b. Some of the more general matters raised are being addressed by activities we
    already have in progress, e.g., learning strategies to support members.
    c. The Board had some discussion about how to respond to members concerns
    regarding warm-ups.
    i. Andy thinks he’s generally on top of warm-ups and will spend some time at a
    future rehearsal talking about warm-ups, including proposing that members
    could engage in some self warm-up prior to arriving at rehearsal.
    d. The Board discussed a suggestion that each section spend 5 – 10 minutes each
    week meeting to trouble-shoot repertoire issues and what types of things section
    head could bring to Andy / Janice’s attention. Rather than formalize this, and use
    valuable rehearsal time, it was suggested that less formal processes, sectionals and
    Music Committee were most suitable for bringing attention to these issues.
    e. The Board discussed encouraging self-organized sectional social activities without
    deciding on any particular course of action.
  2. Other Business
    a. Saliil Subedi is a Nepalese musician who will be featured in this year’s PeaceQuest
    concert at the Isabel. Although OV is not performing at this concert this year, Andy
    has proposed that OV contribute $300 to the cost of bringing Salil Subedi to
    Kingston. While he’s here he would visit Choir on November 13 and, in the interests
    of Choir education and fun, perform and teach a few songs, tell some stories and
    sing along with us.
    i. ACTION: there was consensus that the Choir should contribute $300 to
    the cost of bring Salil Subedi to Kingston.

b. mandate of Music Committee
i. Alan working on it. Will refer to Board orientation manual and have
discussion with Andy and Janice.
ii. Relatedly, it was suggested at Music Committee that we scan the
membership forms to see if any members had indicated an interest in
becoming section leaders.

c. concert committee
i. Sylvie reported that she had met with Skot Caldwell regarding Concert
Committee activities and would be trying to recruit members to assist on this
d. Tate Concert video
i. Andy presented part of the video that we had made of the Choir’s Tate
project and suggested that we upload it to our webpage.
ii. ACTION: Tate project video be uploaded to web and announced to

  1. Principles for financial decision-making
    a. Linda began discussion of a series of principles (attached) developed by the Budget
    Review committee to guide financial decision-making by the Choir. These had been
    distributed in advance of the meeting.
    b. The Board agreed that the principles were appropriate. Some discussion about
    Principle #4 regarding the Choir not relying on grants, donations or sponsors for its
    operations were resolved by reference to the word “generally” in the text of the
    principle – “The Choir is self-supporting and generally not relying on grants, etc. …”.
    c. Given that the Choir has been accumulating a surplus over the last few years, some
    general discussion ensued regarding how the Choir should handle this surplus.
    d. ACTION: The Budget Review Committee undertake more detailed discussion
    of ways to implement these and report back to the Board.
  2. Next Meeting
    a. November 12 at Pam’s.
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