Chicago, 24 August 2014
This was an important August for IFCM . . .
From 29 July to August 13, 2014, IFCM was involved in two major projects: The 12th China International Choral Festival & IFCM World Youth Choral Education Conference, held in Beijing, China, and the 10th World Symposium on Choral Music, held in Seoul, South Korea. All this in addition to a significant and positive change in the operations of IFCM. It’s all good!
This was the second event in which IFCM has partnered with the Organizing Committee, which included the Chinese Choral Association and the China Arts and Entertainment Group, among others. In planning and implementing these events, we have developed a relationship with our Chinese colleagues that is piloted by trust and confidence, which makes it possible to press forward with plans without fear of antagonism. There appears to be a genuine and mutual appreciation for style of working together with the common good of international choral music firmly in mind. It is obvious by the success of these events that this optimistic approach appeals to large numbers of choirs and conductors who attended. They undoubtedly understand that our common mission is creating an educational environment that is conducive to growth, self-assuredness, and friendship. A special thanks goes out to the many people who were instrumental in producing this project, in particular Tian Yubin, Zhang Lu, Liu Peng, Fan Jing and their very competent staffs. IFCM looks very much forward to the next event in 2016.
The 10th World Symposium on Choral Music proved to be an outstanding event both because of the excellence of the performing choirs and lecturers, and also for the exceptional venues and the preparation by our Korean hosts. I want to express my sincerest thanks to the myriad of people who made event this happen, in particular Ambassador Young-shim Dho, Sang-kil Lee, WSCM10 Executive Director Philip Brunelle, Anton Armstrong, and representatives from both the WSCM10 Artistic and Executive Committees. The enormous amount of work that went into a project of this size dictates that many people need to be involved, focused, and own the attitude that they are volunteering for the common good of the international choral community.
For IFCM as an organization, Seoul was equally productive. The General Assembly supported the suggested modifications to IFCM’s operations and governance to ensure that it will be fiscally sound for future decades. As a result of approving the revised Statutes and Bylaws, we:
- reduced the size and function of the Board,
- lessened the financial burden for Board members,
- strengthened the Executive Committee’s position to make and implement decisions more quickly,
- established a lateral leadership structure so that the loss of one leader will not collapse the organization
- made it possible for more volunteers can get involved in the creation and implementation of projects,
- introduced strategies for increasing membership and reducing the cost of becoming a member,
- ensured the continued excellence, and improving the distribution, of the International Choral Bulletin, and
- set the stage for opening IFCM offices on each of the five continents in coming months.
The enormous amount of work to renovate our operational structure was to ensure the on-going support and augmentation of our artistic projects such as:
- World Expo 2015 in Milan, Italy (2015)
- IFCM Asia Pacific Convention and Competition in Macau, China (2015)
- Partnering with the America Cantat in Nassau, Bahamas (2016)
- Reviving the IFCM World Youth Forum with the help of Founding Member the American Choral Conductors Association (ACDA) (2016)
- 11th World Symposium on Choral Music, in Barcelona, Catalonia (2017)
- Launching our improved website
- Expansion of Conductors Without Borders
- Involving more members through our Volunteer Database
- Creating a Composer’s Corner
- Establishing the Third Composer’s Competition
All of this could not have been done without the immensely helpful, focused, and dedicated work of our 2011-2014 Board of Directors, Advisers, and staff. They are:
Board: Michael J. Anderson, Philip Brunelle, Rudolf de Beer, Young-shim Dho , Cristian Grases, Saeko Hasegawa, Shinsuke Kishi, Keiichi Asai, Susan Knight, Stephen Leek, Diego Lenger, Theodora Pavlovitch, Aarne Saluveer, Tim Sharp, Fred Sjöberg, Gábor Móczár, Jennifer Tham, Thierry Thiebaut, Leon Tong Shiu-Wai, Annemarie Van der Walt, Emily Kuo Vong, Håkan Wickström
Advisors: Barbara Burley, André de Quadros, Ricardo Denegri, Edusei Derkyi, Maria Guinand, Simon Halsey, Kunio Imai, Ann Meier Baker, Royce Saltzman, AnneKarin Sundal-Ask, Jonathan Velasco, Lingfen Wu
Staff: Andrea Angelini, Nadine Robin Ryan, Francesco Leonardi, Vladimir Opacic
If you have an opportunity to thank them, I encourage you to do so. It was all for you!
With best wishes,
Dr. Michael J Anderson, President