Musicians’ Network FAQ
In which geographic areas does Music For All Seasons work?
We present our programs throughout New Jersey, in the five boroughs of New York City, in Connecticut, the Greater Philadelphia area, and Los Angeles and Orange Counties of California.
What kinds of musicians perform for MFAS?
We hire professional musicians in a wide variety of categories – classical, popular, jazz, Broadway, ethnic music of all kinds – and all instruments and voices.
What's involved in a program and how long is an average MFAS program?
Each program involves considerable interaction with the audience. The nature of the interaction will vary depending upon the kind of audience – educational for young people, nostalgic and reminiscent for senior audiences, etc., Music For All Seasons will give you guidelines. Each program lasts from 50 – 60 minutes. In a few facilities, usually serving young children, two or more shorter programs may be substituted for the one longer program.
How many musicians perform at the average program?
The average is from one to three, although we use some quartets and, very occasionally, larger groups.
Do the musicians get paid for these programs?
All musicians are paid a professional fee for their services. Fees are negotiated on an individual basis.
How do I apply to work with the organization?
Send a resume, a recording of your performance, and, if possible, a list of upcoming locations where you will be performing live. Send all materials to:
Music For All Seasons, Inc.
336 Park Avenue, Suite 2R
Scotch Plains, New Jersey 07076-1100
Email applications are accepted. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org Please follow up with a phone to call make sure we have received your information. 908 322-6300
If I am accepted, will there be any training?
Yes. In initial meetings, we will discuss with you how to tailor your programs to the needs of specific audiences and will offer suggestions on the types of music and ways of presenting it that have proved the most successful. Usually a staff member from the organization will attend your first few programs and offer suggestions based upon his or her observations.
I'm a great musician, but I'm uncomfortable talking with the audience between numbers. Is this a requirement?
If you are performing alone, yes, this is a requirement. However, if you are part of a group and the other members of the group are willing to do the talking, your part can be kept to a minimum. You may well find that, after a few times, you will feel more comfortable about speaking to the audience.
What kinds of facilities will I be sent to? Do I have any say in where I will be asked to perform?
We try to send musicians to those kinds of facilities for which they are best suited. Working with young children in a hospital or shelter setting requires special skills, and some people have a natural affinity for it, so we will send them to facilities serving children. If you are a percussionist, it is unlikely that we would send you to the intensive care unit of a hospital. Many of our musicians have been uncomfortable with the idea of working in a prison; however, we have encouraged them to try and always with very positive results. Prison audiences are some of our most appreciative and successful.
How far in advance will I be booked?
Programs are generally booked three to six weeks in advance and, providing we know your schedule, can be built around your other professional activities. Occasionally you will be called at the last moment to fill in for a cancellation. Directions, contact names, and other details will be sent to you in plenty of time before each program.
Is there an opportunity for me to meet and talk with other musicians who work for MFAS to exchange ideas and experiences?
Yes, through the Musicians’ Network on musicforallseasons.org.
How have other musicians described their experience of working with under-served audiences?
Several of our musicians have described their work with us as the most important and satisfying work they do. For many musicians, MFAS programs provide opportunities for growth and awareness of the needs of special audiences. These programs also offer opportunities to become more comfortable in dealing with people who have various disabilities. Click here to see some of our musicians’ experiences in their own words.
What if I want to work with the Voices of Valor program?
Please contact us to discuss. Our Voices of Valor musician/facilitators need to be good teachers. We have two leaders for each VOV session—one specializes in lyric writing and the other in music composition. There’s a fair amount of overlapping in these areas, and one of the leaders needs to be proficient in technology, and able to lay down tracks and assist in the recording studio. If you are a strong lyricist (able to guide inexperienced writers) or a composer, have a good sense of fun, and can be extremely supportive of veterans who have little or no musical experience, you may be a good candidate to lead a Voices of Valor session. You would need to commit to eight consecutive meetings with the veteran groups, including a recording session, followed by a CD release party.