January 28, 2006

Greetings Local 47 Colleagues,
Lot’s to cover this time and lots to get worked up about our Local!

I. Another non-meeting with a side of arrogance.
(Board votes to keep quorum at 100 the following day)
II. A Poem commemorating the auspicious evening.
III. Members rebuttal letter is refused for Overture printing.
IV. Reminder of Ewart Family blood drive on February 7th at the Union

Bravo to the 83-86 Members who took the time to show up for
the once again NON-Meeting last Monday at the Local. Needless
to say there were some very upset members at the gathering,
members who made their displeasure known in a very vocal way,
especially when President Espinoza declared the meeting adjourned
at 7:10pm. A former member of the Local 47 board said they
never remembered a meeting being adjourned so quickly before.
No one on the committee ever remembered a meeting being
adjourned so quickly either, but there it was.

There was a bit more tangible arrogance in the officers this time,
in the opinion of some of the members of the committee, but
getting so close to a quorum obviously made the titled officers
nervous, considering how quickly President Espinoza adjourned it.

Predictably, at the Board meeting the next day, having the chance
to do the right thing, they kept the quorum at 100. They had a
chance to decide between the voice of the membership and their
own power and they made the obvious choice, albeit the
regrettable one.

Once again there argument was, “We can’t have 34 people
deciding for the whole membership.”, yet they have no problem
with 8 people doing so. UNITARY BOARD ANYONE?

Many of the comments we want to make are actually made quite
well in a delightful (and anonymous-even to us!) poem one of
our colleagues was moved to compose and send less than a
week after the aborted meeting. These few lines speak volumes:


Poor Hal. Doesn’t have a pal.
Yelling “No meeting – go home!”
Doesn’t boost morale.
Was what’s on people’s minds
Too painful or unkind?
Or maybe he had a better place to be,
Like a gig with the VP in the OC.
Futile to speculate, I guess,
Although I’ve heard the rumors, I confess.
Maybe business the old fashioned way
Really should be the order of the day..
What’s wrong with a nod and a wink?
And for those who may think
Our leader can’t turn a phrase,
At 7:10 pm his voice he did raise.
As the crowd’s jeers he tried to drown,
He ultimately did not let us down:
“There’s no reason to shout!
If you don’t like us, vote us out!”
A stirring sentiment to be sure,
Even though the audience was demure.
But will the members remember
That catchy phrase come yon December?


Bravo (or Brava) to the anonymous poet! It caught a good deal of
the absurdity of that night. We hope the membership does
remember this poem at the next election.

Upon discussion between the committee members, we realized
that the only other meeting with as much frustration and anger
was the “Let’s Trash Tom Lee” Evening. There were a lot of angry
members there, and the flippant perceived treatment of the
membership last Monday night will win no converts for the
present administration.

It’s now over a year since our last meeting, solely because of the
change in the Quorum. The last time the quorum was over 50 we
didn’t have a meeting for 2 years! Are they trying to beat the
record? We do not pay our dues to have a
UNITARY EXECUTIVE BOARD. The members deserve a voice!

There were many groups rehearsing that night, one of which was
the Downey Symphony. We cannot count on our meeting nights
being free from scheduling conflicts, but Member Marcy Vaj
made a great point when she suggested each person there take
the responsibility to bring at least one other with them at the
next meeting.

We would like to go further and ask each member who took the
time and effort to come down Monday night to bring 3 people
with them to the next meeting. The frustration of this
membership with the present administration is festering badly.

Also, on the night of the meeting PLEASE make sure you’re there
at or before 7pm. Hal could decide to call it at 7:05 next time!

III. In another sign of the disregard of this Local for the
membership, Member Charles Fernandez tells us that the Local
has refused to print his rebuttal to the distortions and mistruths
in the three letters of reaction to his letter in the December Overture.

When his letter was not printed in the January issue, he wrote an
e-mail to Serena, which he never received a reply to. On the
evening of the faux-meeting, he asked Serena directly if the
letter refuting the falsehoods written about him would be
printed, he was told that it would not be printed and they
considered the matter closed.

Here is the letter he has just sent to the Secretary and the board
asking for a written explanation of exactly why his letter was not printed:

To the Executive Board % Serena as Secretary/Treasurer 1/26/06

Charles Fernandez
Member Local 47 since 1983

To the Board,

On or around December 5th I sent a rebuttal letter to confront
the distortions and mistruths contained primarily in one of the
three letters printed to refute my initial letter. That initial letter
was held for two months before being printing in the December
issue of the Overture.

When I received my January Overture, the letter had not been
included. I sent an e-mail to Serena asking whether or not it
would be printed and never received a reply. At the aborted
Membership meeting Monday Night I asked her directly and she
told me it would not be printed and they considered the matter
closed. Since the letters contained outright distortions and
fabrications I most certainly do not consider the matter closed.
I do not intend to allow Serena or anyone else at the Local to
leave those mistruths unanswered, and expect the same
platform to answer them as was used to make them.

Should anyone on the Board doubt that the mistruths were
printed, please compare my initial letter to the 2nd of the three
rebuttal letters contained in the December Issue of the Overture.

Article V, Section 4 (i)reads: The Secretary Shall

(i) serve as the editor of Overture, subject to the direction of the
Executive Board, with the right to censor material submitted,
the publication of which might constitute a violation of Federal
law or might involve the Local or any member thereof in
litigation or bring either into disrepute;

As you can see, my rebuttal letter below does not fall under
either of the two only justifications for not printing a members’

I am hereby asking for a written explanation of exactly why the
letter was not printed and who exactly decided not to print it.
Further, I would like to know if it the practice of this Local or the
Board of this Local to inhibit a members’ right to answer
mistruths printed in its own publication.

It took three months before the Board was informed about the
debacle with the Rachmaninov orchestra. To prevent such a
delay here, I am sending a copy of this e-mail directly to each
board member, in case some of them are unaware of the
censorship taking place on the part of the Secretary, Executive
Board, and/or the Titled Officers.

Below I have included the rebuttal letter in case any of the board
members haven’t seen it.

Thank you for your immediate attention to this situation.

In Solidarity,

Charles Fernandez

Dear Serena,

Greetings! Here is a one-time rebuttal for the “letter to the editor”
to the myriad letters of response in the last edition. I trust this
will not have to be held up to be run by Mr. Levy before hand?
I promise it won’t be a monthly thing…

Thank you for your attention.

To the Editor, Word count 400

I wish to thank Serena for including my letter and the rebuttals
in the same issue, if for no other reason, easy reference. I now
partially know why its publication was delayed two months.

I stand by every word of the letter submitted. My sources are
named where pertinent and our conversations related truthfully. I
went out of my way to say that the Scholarship debacle in no way
reflected on the ability or talent of Nicholas. It’s a shame he took
it as a personal attack, it was not.

Mr. Caine intimates that “we” actually means “me”. In fact, no less
than six members approached me about the Scholarship, with
more since. They felt they couldn’t speak up since they make
their living playing jobs, and feared retribution. I have decided I
am willing to speak out about members’ concerns, both on my
own behalf and theirs.

Further in his letter, Mr. Caine says I mischaracterized my
conversation with Dyan from the Overture, another predictable
fiction to muddy the picture. I don’t even mention Dyan’s name
in the letter. Since the Overture made a mistake (“Fell through
the cracks” were her words), not a conscious decision, I saw no
point to naming Dyan. Nor would it reflect on Dyan if I had.

Mr. Caine also infers that I am impugning the integrity of the
Office in New York. My only mention of New York is my
conversation with Ms. Jacobson, wherein she says, “The Local
submits the name of the person they believe most deserves the
scholarship”. The Local submits the name, not the international.
My issue is with the Local and the sorry job they do of informing
members of opportunities. We’re among the largest Locals in the
Federation. If anyone should go overboard with notifications it
should be we! That is one of my main points. Having only three
apply in 11 years should be taken as a personal failure of the
local. We should have numerous applicants every year.

If space permitted I would go through Mr. Caine’s letter point by
point, but the fictions are too numerous, by design I imagine,
and my 400 words are up.

Pro or Con, speak up folks! Don’t complain that the Union does
nothing for you if you don’t stand up and be counted. Be at the
January 23rd meeting!

In Solidarity,

Charles Fernandez

P.S.- Serena, if you should feel that the last sentence, “Be at the
January 23rd meeting!”, makes it too political, please feel free to
edit that one sentence out.


If you can, please come out for this important event to support a
colleague in need!

The Musicians Union, Local 47 – DAVID EWART FAMILY BLOOD DRIVE

10:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Professional Musicians Local 47 Auditorium
817 Vine Street
Hollywood, California

Sign Up:
Call: 323-993-3159
E-Mail: [email protected]

The Providence Blood Donor Center will provide everything, right
down to juice & cookies. And every donor will receive a coupon
for a free pint of ice cream from Baskin Robbins.

In a terrible accident, on Christmas Eve night, their house caught
on fire from a fault in the Christmas tree wiring. Several family
members were badly burned, including Dave, his son, his mother,
his father, and others. Several are currently in the Sherman Oaks
Burn Center.

The Official Ewart Family Update Website[email protected]/


If you’re not sure whether you’re eligible to donate blood,
please check at this site for information.


Two wide ranging restrictions not listed on the page:
If you have visited the UK for 3 months cumulatively between
December, 1980 to 1996 you cannot give blood.

Or if you have been to Europe for 5 years cumulatively in the
period between 1980-present, you cannot donate.

That’s all for now, but we have a lot of work to do. When
something the Local does upsets you, Write to them, let them
know. Write to the Overture! Write to the Officers.

For now, we’re looking to expanding the number of people on
our list. If you know of anyone who does not receive our
postings, please let us know!

We also want to know what YOU want to talk about. We’ve
recently been asked to talk about the Health Insurance situation
between the Local and Motion Picture Plan and how it could be improved. We’ve also been asked
to explain exactly what CORE STATUS is. We’ll certainly look for
your questions and feedback.

Together we can make the Local better.

Until next time.



  1. bobobob says:

    This board should have been removed long long ago

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