Guest-Blogging, MOA Annual Meetings, and Advent Reminder

I was asked by Mr. Norman Lebrecht over at the Slipped Disc blog to contribute a summary of the Minnesota situation. Here ’tis. As I say in the article, I welcome any clarification from the MOA. (Heck, even an acknowledgement of my existence would be nice… *waves* I know you know I’m here, MOA! It’s getting awkward never hearing from you! Trust me, there’s absolutely nothing to be afraid of! I’m only 90 pounds, and I’m disabled, to boot! So come on over and pull up a chair!) Anyway. The lesson I took away from writing the Lebrecht entry? It’s much more difficult to write something in 850 words than it is in 3000!

I also have an answer to a question I’ve been hearing a lot of lately: when is the MOA’s annual meeting? And that question is invariably followed up by, can we protest at it?

According to the Star Tribune, the annual meeting of the Minnesota Orchestral Association will take place on Thursday December 6. We don’t know when in the day or where, so unless information is leaked and publicized in time, sadly we cannot protest at it. (I’m guessing that the MOA is keeping the time and location under pretty tight wraps. I can’t imagine they’re very keen on the idea of a public demonstration outside their annual meeting.) We have no idea what will happen there. (Some tough questions for Mr. Henson, such as, why did you lie to the state legislature? Discussion of canceling more concerts? Discussion of hiring replacement musicians? A full vote of confidence in MOA leadership from the board? Musician bashing? Union bashing? Musicians’ union bashing? The mind boggles at the possibilities!) In years past, Graydon Royce has reported on the meeting, so keep an eye out on the Strib’s website for that.

To be a fly on the wall there. There would be so much material for this blog, I’d be busy until Christmas. Oh, well. I’ll have to make due with all the material that is public, and to be fair, there is a lot of material that is public. I’m working on a couple of essays at the moment, examining management’s latest Strib editorial and Doug Kelley’s string of non sequiturs on Almanac. And I know Mary is working on another installment of her financials series. And I know of at least a couple other people who are digging around in tax forms and Internet archives and the like. And I imagine Graydon Royce is researching stuff, as well. So take heart; this story isn’t over yet, by any stretch of the imagination. Despite any discouragement you may have, keep your chin up, and stay tuned. We’ve only just begun to fight.

Hope you’re having as enjoyable a holiday season as possible, given the circumstances. Have you checked out the Song of the Lark Advent Calendar? If you haven’t, you should! We’re – er, I’m – still accepting submissions for memories / encouragement for all those affected by the lockout(s), to be sent to songofthelarkchristmasproject [at] I’d really appreciate hearing from you! And if you want to send out some polite letters of protest along with your Christmas cards this year, I have just the entry to help you do just that.


Filed under My Writing

6 responses to “Guest-Blogging, MOA Annual Meetings, and Advent Reminder

  1. Kevin Kooiker

    As far as the location of the meeting is concerned, since Orchestra Hall itself is presumably unavailable, I’d look for it at the Hilton. The big banks probably both have a large enough conference room, and any of the big hotels would work, but the Hilton would be most convenient for the staff. There is probably some obfuscation, but someone familiar with the catering or housekeeping schedules could probably figure it out.

  2. Sarah

    Emily, you are ON FIRE. Great guest post at Slipped Disc too! I really appreciate the information and perspective you keep sending our way.

  3. I understand that the Minnesota Orchestra board typically meets at lunchtime at the Minneapolis Club, 729 Second Avenue South, Minneapolis, Minnesota. They are not listed on the schedule, and I don’t know Mpls regulations for street demonstrations or protests, but if a few folks showed up with signs or support buttons, it might at least get seen and noted. The board and management have dug themselves a bunker to insulate themselves from listening to and communicating with the players and the public. This is short notice, but, it’s also short notice for them to change their meeting place if they hear protestors may be present. We should plan for some public show of support for bringing the musicians back to do what they do better than just about anybody!

    • I know of at least one person who is coming to join you. Hang tight.

      • rolferd

        Hi Emily,

        Thanks for sending reinforcements! Nice to meet Kristen. I contacted Bill and was very happy he came to help kick things off on short notice. We were few, but I think the fact that we were there may spread a bit by TV news and via the web. WCCO and KSTP camera teams were there and checked out our sign. I’ll also attach a couple pictures from the day.

        My main message was we need two things for music to happen – musicians and an audience. Sadly the actions of the Board are alienating, insulting, and driving away both.

        Thanks for all you’ve done to try to fill in the pieces of this very jumbled and tricky jigsaw!

        Things have to change for the better soon.

        Best wishes!

        Rolf Erdahl

        • That’s fantastic. I’m betting if knowledge of the meeting place had been wider-spread sooner that there would have been a lot more people there… But of course then we would have had the issue that they likely would have moved the meeting to avoid any protesters.

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