Musicians


Many professional performers work freelance and are, therefore, self-employed. The Corps of Army Music is currently the UK’s largest employer of professional instrumentalists offering a career up to the age of 55. For orchestral players, employers include ballet, symphony, opera and chamber orchestras some of whom will be large enough to employ musicians on full-time contracts. These employers will also employ people on a freelance basis to play specialist instruments, for certain performances and to cover absences, e.g. for those on maternity leave.

Self-governing orchestras, which tend to be less financially secure than the bigger orchestras, will employ musicians on a regular basis, but tend to pay their musicians as freelancers rather than as salaried employees.

There is also occasional work offered by independent fixers for choral society performances, recording sessions and outdoor performances. Freelance musicians or permanent staff can take on this ad hoc work.

The most common employers of singers are opera companies, as there are very few professional choirs. This can lead to other employment opportunities as many of the larger choral societies employ opera singers for solo and oratorio work.

Musician

I sent my resume around the internet via Monster and got a hook from a company in Florida. Not unlike a hungry fish, I took the bait and, after paying them $500.00, I am now an Affiliate, meaning I am a sales person who signs pre-qualified leads up for a $50 fee and $20 per month. There’s no yearly contract, so, I was thinking I’m not putting anyone out of much money if it doesn’t work for them; and the company has been very nice, diligent with their training, and straightforward as far as I can tell.

AFTER THE FACT I read on a website and the following facts are emerging much to my disappointment:

FACT: People at casting agencies, modeling agencies, and talent agencies see enough potential models in person and receive enough photos through other means that searching online for “new faces” is unnecessary.”

FACT: Good casting directors, modeling agents, and talent agents are too busy to spend hours online trolling for photos of ‘new faces’.”

Ya reckon I’ve allowed myself to screw myself?

“FACT: I was under the impression that as new faces are always “needed” and as the internet does allow for potential “talent” to be looked at by potential employers, it’s a good thing, and not exploitive.”

Are we now POSITIVE that on-line talent search agencies are unnecessary and thus all just a great deal of hype?

Then it would seem that we need to approach these people (casting directors, modeling agents, and talent agents) directly and this Talented Cafe website does the trick by giving us the email database? Bet there are going to be a LOT of “VERY PISSED OFF” talent agents once this takes hold… Get in line I’m already posting my email. Hahaha!!!

Thanks Talented Cafe People!!!

 

MONTGOMERY CO. MAN ACCUSED OF PERPETRATING TALENT AGENT SCAM
Spitzer’s Office Files Lawsuit Seeking Restitution for Defrauded Actors


Attorney General Eliot Spitzer today announced that his office has filed a lawsuit against a Montgomery County man who scammed dozens of actors into believing he was a talent agent and casting director for major motion picture studios.Eric Charles Roselli, also known as Eric Latham, of Amsterdam, is accused of fraud, deceptive business practices, false advertising and violations of a state law that prohibits advertisements for show business employment opportunities when an advance fee is a condition of employment.

“This individual pretended to be a movie talent agent and nearly convinced many people to pay in advance for an opportunity to appear in a movie,” Spitzer said. “But his claims were not substantiated and my office is now seeking restitution for those who were victimized.”

In June 2003, Roselli placed an advertisement in Backstage Magazine, a publication read by individuals in the entertainment industry. The advertisement invited aspiring actors to call a Manhattan telephone number for information about auditions purportedly affiliated with Paramount Studios and Warner Brothers.

Actors who called were told that auditions were being held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Albany. Hundreds of individuals traveled to Albany, at their own considerable expense, to appear for the auditions.

Spitzer’s investigation revealed that Roselli was not affiliated with either Castles in the Skystudio and that every actor who auditioned was offered a role by Roselli on the condition that they pay him $552 to join the “Artists Union,” a non-existent entity.

Several actors recognized Roselli’s offer as a scam and reported it to Spitzer’s office. Fortunately, no one paid the fee sought by Roselli.

In filing the lawsuit, Spitzer’s office seeks a court order compelling Roselli to pay full monetary restitution and damages to all aggrieved consumers, civil penalties for his violations of state laws and costs. The lawsuit also seeks a permanent injunction against Roselli barring him from future fraudulent, deceptive and illegal practices.

Individuals wishing to file a complaint against Roselli are encouraged to call the Attorney General’s consumer help line at (800) 771-7755 or visit the office’s web site at www.oag.state.ny.us.

This case is being handled by Principal Attorney Robert Vawter of the Consumer Frauds and Protection Bureau.

While transferring hard copy files from the dinky cabinet to the new, shiny monster occupying the corner of my office, I came across a draft pitch sheet with some old novel ideas, like this one:

Hell on Wheels

Paraplegic Mike Anderson becomes stranded during a vacation rafting expedition for the handicapped on the American River. His only help is a newly-blind woman, former neurosurgeon Rebecca Stark. [Stuff happens, they survive.] Back in Florida Keys, Mike helps Becca accept the disability that ended her career, while she secretly arranges for an operation that may restore the use of Mike’s legs [twist: Becca’s eyesight is restored, Mike remains in the chair.] ECD: mid-2002

In those days I always took a pitch sheet with me to any publisher event (something I made a habit of after being cornered by Gina Centrello at a national conference and going completely blank-headed.) At the bottom of this particular sheet I wrote: “Polish, keep in purse.” That came in handy later, when my editor took me out to dinner and asked me what else I was thinking about writing next. I made her laugh when I took the polished version out of my purse and simply handed it to her.

Hell on Wheels was my favorite of the eight premises I pitched to her that night. I had wanted to do a book featuring Mike Anderson, a wheelchair-bound secondary character from my first romance, Paradise Island. I was advised by a RWA friend that the idea it would not fly because both of the main characters were not beautiful, perfect, abled people. I figured that was its strong point.

But my friend was right — my editor didn’t like handicapped heroes or heroines, or the idea that the ending was (in her view) less than happy for one of them. She nixed all seven of the other premises, too. Some were better (as in more mainstream, less risky) than Mike’s story, so it puzzled me.

I found out why when the editor told me the publisher only wanted me to continue the storyline from the trilogy I’d just wrapped up that June. Wrapped up as in finished, done, over, no more stories. Being the cooperative soul that I am, I went home, filed away all my new ideas in my unwritten archives and wrote up what they wanted. Those books became the Jessica Hall novels, which made my publisher happy and added greatly to the savings account.

Stuff happens. You adapt, you compromise, you keep working. Or you don’t. Those are the choices we sometimes have to make between creating art and making a living.

What’s in your unwritten archives?

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