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The year is well and truly underway, and Symphony Services International has been busy providing a wide range of services to its Member and Associate orchestras. Don’t forget that many of these services can be purchased by any orchestra, professional or amateur, around the world. See for more details about services such as music hire, Goodear Editions, the Goodear Acoustic Shield, program notes, surtitles and more.

As usual, this issue of The Podium is full of interesting reading. Our LA-based consultant Gordon Williams discusses how living on the West Coast of the US has affected the way he thinks about music.

Dr David Garrett will be well known to many Australian concert-goers for his thoughtful and knowledgeable program notes, which add so much to their listening experience.  In the mid-1990s David worked for a time with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, and his insight into the orchestral scene of our nearest neighbour is enlightening.

Our Top Tip deals with the issue of superannuation, and the new requirement for Australian companies to contribute via SuperStream as well as some other interesting taxation and finance facts. The Speed Read collates interesting stories from around the world, and our featured Member is the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.

In late May, SSI’s Music Library Manager Vi King Lim will attend the Major Orchestral Librarians Association (MOLA) conference in Montreal, Canada. Look out for his full article next time round.

Our readership is now nearly 2500 and we endeavour to be as relevant and interesting as possible to orchestral staff and players all around the world. Please let us know if you enjoy The Podium, and any suggestions you may have for improvement, or stories for the future.

Best regards till next time,

Kate Lidbetter
Chief Executive Officer

A Different Geography: How LA has affected my musical thinking

Gordon Williams discusses classical music in the land of the silver screen. Read the article.

Soundings across the Tasman - Over Time

David Garrett surveys orchestral activity in New Zealand and Australia, comparing changes in the past 20 years. Read his insights here.

Featured Member orchestra – MSO

With a reputation for excellence, versatility and innovation, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra is Australia’s oldest orchestra and an essential part of Melbourne’s rich cultural fabric. Read more.

Top Tip – Superannuation and Tax

Are you ready for SuperStream ?

SuperStream is a new mandatory government Superannuation clearing house for all employers making super contributions. Plan now and find out more.

Foreign Resident Artists - did you know?

Employers are liable to make Superannuation contributions to persons who are paid to perform or participate in a performance of any music, play, dance or entertainment involving the exercise of intellectual, artistic, musical, physical or other personal skills as they are deemed employees under Superannuation legislation (SGAA).  An exemption from SGAA is possible if the person’s country has a bilateral Social Security International Agreement with Australia, however a certificate needs to be provided. For list of countries with Certificate of Coverage eligibility click here.

Foreign residents’ super gets taxed at 15% going into the fund and 38% on the balance when claimed back.

Employers are not required to withhold tax from US performers earning less than US$10,000 within a tax year.

Employers are not required to withhold tax from foreign resident support staff working in the entertainment industry when they come from a country with which Australia has an international tax agreement, as long as they are not present in Australia more than 183 days in a financial year.

Update your records – the end of financial year is near

Don’t forget to update any changes of address with your employer(s) to ensure you receive your payment summary.

Speed Read

How broad is classical repertoire these days? The Korea Times reviews a concert of Azerbaijani classical music.

Broadcaster Graham Parker asks the New York Philharmonic not to ignore the audience in its search for a new Music Director…

While Alan Gilbert, who will step down as Music Director of the New York Philharmonic in 2017, argues that new relationships orchestras forge with contemporary audiences will help orchestras to grow.