The IFCM Executive Committee and Board of Directors met in Pécs, Hungary in July. On the agenda were items that were significant to the future of IFCM, opportunities for our members, and a reversion to the way IFCM operates. It was VERY exciting!
New Board Member: First, we added a new member to the Board. Nominated by the Boards of three Latin American choral organizations, Oscar Escalada has been intimately involved in international choral music for as long as I can remember. He is a well-known composer, conductor, and administrator. Last year he served as a member of the Artistic Committee for the 10th World Symposium on Choral Music in Seoul, South Korea. In addition, he serves as President of the very successful America Cantat organization, presently working with IFCM and IFCM Founding Member ACDA, to produce the next America Cantat in Nassau, Bahamas 21-31 August 2016. Oscar possesses an extraordinarily strong work ethic and has the support of major colleagues in his region of the world. We are honored to have him with us.
10 Year Plan: The Board developed a 10 year plan, focusing on the original goals for forming IFCM in the first place— the support of our Founding Members (FM) in all facets of international choral music. IFCM if functioning to find and develop new opportunities for our FM, with the intent that they will turn around and use these opportunities to expand possibilities for their own membership. For instance, the new IFCM World Choral Expo 2015, to be held in Macau, China this coming November; the expanded work of the IFCM Conductors Without Borders in Africa, South and North America, and Asia South Pacific; and the second iteration of the IFCM World Youth Forum, to be held at the American Cantat next year. All of these projects are being developed with the close collaboration of our Founding Members. Our expectation is that these projects will act as “seeds” that the Founding Members in due course will take on for their members.
New Operations Model: With the rewrite of our Statutes and Bylaws last year at the General Assembly, we established a major shift in our operations. Referred to as the New Operations Model, it allows for the retention of an already-built, robust artistic model, yet establishes the following:
- Total elimination of reliance on government funding
- Administrative responsibilities spread laterally (not focused on one Secretary-General or Executive Director)
- A working Board
- New revenue-generation format, ensuring a steady flow of operating funds
Non-profit status: Two years ago, we created IFCM-US, a parallel non-profit organization whose sole purpose was to raise revenue for IFCM. The organization is administered by an American Board of Directors whose President is also the President of IFCM. This ensures continuity and transparency.
Multiple Offices: We are working to establish offices on five continents. At present we have temporary offices in Europe and Asia. This will establish a good foundation for future changes in leadership with its implications when the focus is in another country.
Smaller Leadership: We have developed a smaller, more condensed, working Executive Committee (ExCom) and Board of Directors (they were 7/40, now 5/14). This makes it possible to make decisions more quickly and retain flexibility. Each member asked to be a significant part of administration of project(s), and their expenses are paid.
There is so much more that I will save for the next President’s Column.
I am excited about our future. I see it as a reflection of the past—built on a new, sustainable structure—that will lead us to a bright and progressive future. There are many people who already are involved in global choral music. Be one . . . get involved in the “New IFCM!”
Michael J Anderson, President