Magazine article International Musician

The Music Performance Trust Fund-Get the Picture!

Magazine article International Musician

The Music Performance Trust Fund-Get the Picture!

Article excerpt

If you have ever heard me speak about the mission of the Music Performance Trust Fund (MPTF), you might remember that I invariably request photos, whenever possible, from the events that we co-sponsor. I am sure that, on the surface, it sounds quaint and nice that the MPTF wants to have a collection of memories or that we are looking for some added proof that the event actually happened.

The fact is, I see the use of photos as the tools to convey the impact of the MPTF's work. It's not always easy for people to grasp exactly who we are and what we do. We are a support organization. We support the employment of musicians. We support traditional values and community spirit We help use music as an instrument of well-being for the elderly. We support music culture and music education for our young people.

However, we are never alone in this effort. As supporters of local community events, we are a co-sponsor. We are never specifically in the forefront, which is simply part of who we are. Many of the events that we help to succeed would continue on even without our help. However, there are also many events where our financial support is a linchpin to a school program or a traditional public event Certainly, the members of the American Federation of Musicians understand what we do better than anyone. However, it is not always obvious for those outside the realm of live music performing to get it.

So how does the MPTF tell its story? How do we get the outside world to relate to our value? How can we, through our mission to assure that musicians are paid fairly for free public performances, educate others to the value of music and the musicians who perform it?

That's where pictures come in. "Pictures are worth a thousand words," goes the old axiom. Pictures tell complex stories and convey a wide dimension of information and emotion. …

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