News and Announcements
Important Announcement from President Renée Porzel:
February 18, 2013
The International Board of Directors works to ensure the needs of our members are met by proactively examining every aspect of what we do and how we do it. The Board is diligent in maintaining the educational value for our membership, and protecting the financial future of our organization. It is a balancing act in the current financial climate, and mirrors the efforts of every one of our regions and choruses. Sweet Adelines have always been creative musical trail blazers, and we continue to set the course for barbershop music in the world today. Maintaining financial health is all of our responsibility, and will help us continue to share the music we love.
As many of you know, in 2009 the Rising Star Quartet Contest was added to the annual international convention schedule as a way to involve young women in the networking and educational aspects of the international convention. The experience for these young singers has been very positive, but the contest, when held in this venue, is quite expensive for both the participants and our organization. The convention schedule is extremely full, and it has been challenging to place this contest in a mutually beneficial spot during the week. The only viable option, due to school schedules and the availability of the stage and judges, requires these young women to compete early in the morning on Saturday, typically without the benefit of a large audience. The cost of including this contest in the convention has risen each year along with other expenses, and currently costs over $80,000 to produce. After much review and discussion, the International Board of Directors has decided that instead of holding the Rising Star Contest in Hawaii this year, we will reschedule and reintroduce the contest in 2014 in conjunction with a Regional Young Women in Harmony event.
The good news is that this could be your region! At the end of this year’s regional competition season, all regions will be invited to submit a proposal to add the Rising Star Quartet Contest to an event they would co-sponsor with International in 2014 during the months of June, July or August. The Board recognizes that not all regions have identical school schedules for young women in their area, but these three months have the highest concentration of traditional regional educational events, and therefore are the most viable option for the timing of this new contest. Depending on the response from regions, we may be able to hold these International Rising Star contests in multiple locations at some time in the future. The goal right now is to have one contest in 2014. The Board will entertain all requests, while keeping a watchful eye on the financial bottom line.
Explicit procedures are being developed that define the specific roles and time lines involved, including provision of judges, site negotiation, ticket price, division of proceeds and onsite event management. The International organization will administer the contest and be responsible for competitor registration. These details will be covered in the request for proposal.
A region can choose to hold a new event or add to an already scheduled event. Benefits for the region are:
• Additional media coverage
• Higher attendance at a regional event
• Growth opportunities that come with the connection to an Internationally sponsored event
• Increased revenue potential
• Increased exposure to potential members
Competitors will also see added value to the contest being reintroduced as part of a regional weekend. Benefits for the competitors are:
• Less conflict with traditional school year schedules
• More flexibility in scheduling to allow more education for participants
• More interaction with members of our organization, resulting in increased membership
We recognize that regions have already held contests where youth quartets have qualified for funding to Rising Star Hawaii. Once time and location are determined, these quartets will be offered the opportunity first to participate in the 2014 Rising Star Quartet Contest. We encourage you to maintain contact with these young women and create additional meaningful ways to recognize their accomplishments. Invite them to perform at a regional event, provide funding for them to attend AHA 2014, or have choruses feature them in a chorus show. It is vital for them to sing in front of an appreciative audience, and spend time with women who love to sing.
For the International organization this is a less costly alternative (saving close to $80,000 annually) which will allow us to continue our outreach and showcase these young women singers in an exciting environment that fits in with their busy lives.
The International Board of Directors thanks you for your support and welcomes your region to submit a proposal.