Sample Invitation Email for Opening Weekend Concerts

One of our SOSMN Leaders sent this email to many of her friends the week of September 8. If you’d like to send a message to your friends and aren’t quite sure what to say, feel free to borrow any or all of her verbiage!

Dear Friends,

Maybe you like classical music. 

Maybe you don’t. 

Or… maybe you don’t know if you like classical music.

How about taking a chance to find out?

As a member of Save Our Symphony Minnesota (SOSMN) for the past year, I have been working – along with an army of music fans – to ensure the return of the Orchestra’s musicians to Orchestra Hall.  It has been a remarkable journey back from a 16-month lockout.

Our efforts succeeded.  The Orchestra has been saved.  Now it needs YOUR support to thrive.

The opening of the 2014-15 Minnesota Orchestra Season – on September 26, 27 and 28 – will be spectacular.  Dubbed “A Grand New Beginning” it will feature a colorful, powerful, emotional showcase of the finest talents and best-honed skills of our magnificent musicians and Osmo Vänskä, the Conductor/Music Director.

I invite you to visit http://www.minnesotaorchestra.org/buy/tickets/browse-calendar/eventdetail/332/-/season-opening-a-grand-new-beginning#.VA8VVPldV3k to explore options for attending one concert (just one—to see if you like it) and to support, in spirit or body, what is genuinely one of the most important and valuable elements of Minnesota’s cultural landscape.

Opening weekend will feature Mahler’s monumental Symphony No. 2 “Resurrection” and Barber’s Cello Concerto.  Neither should be missed. In addition, a variety of celebratory activities are scheduled for the Atrium and Lobby before and after each of these opening weekend concerts (including a trivia contest with prizes, music in the Lobby, photo booths for your participation in a giant photo mosaic, and more).

[My husband] and I are going and will gladly meet you there either Friday or Saturday evening.

Go ahead.  Call the orchestra or check out their website and buy tickets. Make a date with friends or significant others for a wonderful night out in downtown Minneapolis. I predict you will not be disappointed. 

No need to respond to me, unless you have questions.

Thanks for your time in reading this.

Hope to see you at Orchestra Hall.

Sincerely,

[SOSMN member]

 

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SOSMN to City of Mpls: If Granting MOA a One-Year Exemption, Attach Certain Conditions

On March 24, Save Our Symphony MN wrote a fifth letter to Minneapolis Community Planning & Economic Development (CPED) Interim Executive Director Chuck Lutz, copying Mayor Betsy Hodges and City Attorney Susan Segal. Our letter follows the announcement of MOA President/CEO Michael Henson’s August 31 departure and argues that his departure does not cure the defaults described in our previous correspondence.

However, recognizing that the City might want to give new MOA management an opportunity to demonstrate that it can comply with the terms of the Lease going forward and thus grant an exemption until the next annual report (due December 31), we recommend that such an exemption be granted only on certain conditions, including changes in MOA governance to provide for public participation as well as public disclosure of financial information and Board minutes. Our letter can be read/downloaded here:  SOS Letter to City of Minneapolis CPED (03-24-2014)

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SOSMN to City of Mpls: MOA’s Revised Annual Report Still Raises Concerns

On March 3, the Minnesota Orchestral Association (MOA) delivered a revised annual report to the City of Minneapolis, required by MOA’s Lease of Orchestra Hall from the City.  They were asked to revise their initial report of December 12 in light of the January 14 contract settlement and their resulting ability to more reliably plan the rest of this Season and the 2014-2015 Season, as well as more reliably forecast contributed income.  The MOA’s March 3 report can be found here:  http://tinyurl.com/MOA-report-2014-03-03

On March 17, Save Our Symphony MN wrote a fourth letter to Minneapolis Community Planning & Economic Development (CPED) Interim Executive Director Chuck Lutz, copying Mayor Betsy Hodges and City Attorney Susan Segal. Our letter analyzes MOA’s revised annual report in detail and reasserts that MOA is in Default.

In addition, we express our continuing significant concerns about MOA’s viability and its ability to comply with the terms of the Lease.  We identify serious obstacles to restoring the artistic and financial health of the Minnesota Orchestra, including the apparent division on the MOA board about bringing back Osmo Vänskä as music director, the perception that the recent settlement is simply a step in a process that will continue until significant musician salary reductions are imposed, the loss of several key musicians, and a loss of good will in the community due to all these factors.

SOSMN’s March 17 letter can be found here.  (This is a very large file, so it might take a bit longer to open/download):  SOS Letter to City of Minneapolis CPED (03-17-2014)

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“Bring Back Osmo” Letters and Posts

Attorney Lee Henderson has shared the results of his February 1 StarTribune commentary piece with us at SOSMN.  About 2500 people responded, and Mr. Henderson summarizes the results and shares some of the comments in his February 6 letter to newly-elected MOA Board Chair Gordon Sprenger.  You can read this letter here:   2014-02-06_Sprenger_Ltr

 

You can read Henderson’s February 1 Opinion piece here:  StarTribune Commentary

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SOSMN to City of Mpls: MOA in Non-Curable Default on Lease Terms

On Friday, January 10, Save Our Symphony MN wrote a third letter to Minneapolis Community Planning & Economic Development (CPED) Executive Director Jeremy Hanson Willis, copying Mayor Betsy Hodges and City Attorney Susan Segal.

This letter addresses which aspects of the Minnesota Orchestral Association’s non-compliance with the Lease requirements are potentially curable and which ones are not curable (e.g., the historical facts of MOA’s inaccurate and incomplete financial information to the State Legislature and to the City prior to execution to the Lease).

We reassert that these Defaults by MOA provide ample justification to the City of Minneapolis to terminate the Lease.

Click here to read or download the letter:  SOS Letter to City of Minneapolis CPED (01-10-2014)

SOSMN’s December 31 letter to the City can be read by clicking here.

Our January 3 letter can be read by clicking here.

Attorney Lee Henderson’s January 9 letter can be read by clicking here.

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Attorney Lee Henderson to City of Mpls: MOA not in Compliance with Lease

On Tuesday, December 31, and Thursday, January 3, Save Our Symphony MN wrote letters to Minneapolis Community Planning & Economic Development (CPED) Executive Director Jeremy Hanson Willis, arguing that the Minnesota Orchestral Association (MOA) is in Default under Section 28(I) of the Lease because information previously submitted to the State of Minnesota was not true, complete and correct. We requested the City of Minneapolis to take appropriate steps to terminate the Lease.  Those letters can be found in this blog here and here.

On Thursday, January 9, Attorney Lee Henderson wrote to CPED Executive Director Jeremy Hanson Willis, expanding the argument that MOA is out of compliance with the Lease.  Henderson highlights terms of the State of Minnesota Grant Agreement and the City of Minneapolis Lease.  He then dissects more than a dozen points from MOA’s December 2 and December 20 reports to the City, arguing that MOA’s data and assertions regarding programming and budget issues fail to meet even a cursory reading of the Lease. Henderson concludes that CPED must determine that MOA is not in compliance with its Lease obligations and refer the matter to the City Council.

Click here to read or download Mr. Henderson’s letter:  2014-01-09_City_Letter_re_MOA – Henderson

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SOSMN to City of Mpls.: MOA has not Provided Complete and Accurate Financial Data

On Friday, January 3, Save Our Symphony MN wrote a letter to Minneapolis Community Planning & Economic Development (CPED) Executive Director Jeremy Hanson Willis, copying Mayor Betsy Hodges and City Attorney Susan Segal.

Our letter responds to statements made by the Minnesota Orchestral Association (MOA) following press reports on our December 31 letter. We address MOA’s claim that they provided additional information to the State beyond that provided to the Legislative Auditor, and reassert our belief that MOA has failed to provide complete and accurate financial information to the State.

Click here to read or download the letter:  SOS Letter to City of Minneapolis CPED (01-03-2014)

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