2016–17 was busy with off-forum year programmes; it was also a year of important organizational growth and community development.
Propelled by the concerns and energy of FORUM 2016, CNMN launched the Rolling National Conversation on Diversity, with sessions in Halifax, Victoria and Montreal. (See Equity and Diversity report for details.) It has had a galvanizing effect in local communities where follow-up gatherings are planned; and it has equipped CNMN with a keener sense of concerns and problems, which we have taken to discussions with sister organizations Opera.ca, Orchestras Canada, the Canadian Music Centre and the Canadian League of Composers. There is much more work to be done and plans are afoot.
CNMN also embarked on its first formal survey: Pathway to a Life in New Music. Work began in the fall of 2016, and by the end of June we were ready to launch the survey. (See Survey report for details.) It has been an eye-opening introduction to the world of sampling and data analysis; the findings of this study and the strong professional relationships we have established argue for more studies in the future.
There were three new additions to CNMN’s committees: Equity and Diversity, Communications, and Touring Network; others –Public Engagement, Digital Content Initiative, and Language – were busy through the year with issues in their areas and project development. The FORUM 2018 Steering committee was formed in the spring.
As to CNMN’s administration, the Administrative Director Emily Hall attended ably in with members through e‑blasts and bulletins, maintaining the web site and membership information, keeping the board on track, supporting projects, and planning for grant applications, among other things. Bookkeeper Cléo Palatio-Quintin provided timely bookkeeping; and Ananda Suddath assisted with event production. During the year Cléo announced her intention to step down as of June 30 and recommended Mathieu Leclair, who has been installed as her successor bookkeeper.
Over the course of the year CNMN went through an important internal assessment. The board executive – Jennifer Waring, Juliet Palmer, Po Yeh and Sean Clarke – in consultation with Christina Loewen, Executive Director of Opera.ca, and other experts in the community, examined the structural and administrative needs of the organization, concluding that it would be better served by the leadership of an Executive Director. CNMN’s finances allow for a part-time position, with additional support for event production. The plan was approved by the board at its meeting in May 2017, a timeline fixed (completion in Nov 2017) and a search committee struck.
2016–17 saw significant turnover in board members. Stacey Brown, Louise Campbell, Jim Montgomery, Heidi Ouellette and Kyle Brenders all stepped down, some after long service. Replacing them, and also filling new positions created by a change in the By-laws that increased the board from 12 to 15 members, were: Sarah Albu, Jennifer Butler, Sean Clarke, Emily Doolittle, Kathryn Ladano, Marc-Olivier Lamontagne, Megumi Masaki, and Juliet Palmer. Over the course of the year, Alain Perron stepped down and was replaced by Brenda Cleniuk (Saskatchewan); and momentously Tim Brady stepped down, to be replaced by Clemens Merkel (Quebec).
CNMN received funding for the past year from: the Canada Council for the Arts (our first core funding — $17,000); the SOCAN Foundation (an increase from $13,500 to $17,000); and FACTOR ($8,000 for the Rolling National Conversations on Diversity). These are all good results, but being accept into the core funding stream at the Canada Council was particularly significant as it made us eligible for a much higher level of funding under the new structures at the CCA.
We look forward to 2017–18 with excitement. It’s a year featuring not just another FORUM, but a forum in two places; and CNMN welcomes its first Executive Director, Terri Hron. CNMN has taken a big step.
submitted by Jennifer Waring, president