AGM 2018

Minutes of Kaleidoscope 2018 AGM held 27th February 2018 7.45 pm at Thomas Spencer Hall, Whittington, Lichfield

Apologies :  Lynn Walsh, Janette Walton, Margaret Leonard, Kareen Lowther, Madelaine Gorman, Elaine Penn, Elaine Arblaster, Marilyn Heald

  1. Minutes of 2018 AGM

It was proposed by Ann Smedley and seconded by Catherine Docherty that these be adopted as a true record. This was agreed unanimously by the members present.

  • Chairperson’s Report

We started off the year with Live Life on Broadway, a major event in the Cathedral working with other choirs. Performing without music copies impressed the audience and just shows what we can do when we try.  The event was a great challenge for the choir and if you recall, it raised significant funds for the organ donation charity, Live Life, Give Life.

In March we raised funds for St Peter’s Church, Stonnall by performing there, and in April, we had a very enjoyable workshop with Ula Weber who gave us the longest warm-up I think we have ever experienced and a great arrangement of Make you Feel my Love.  In July we raised funds for the Footprints children’s charity with a concert here in Thomas Spencer Hall and in October we sang for the Pathway Project to help victims of domestic abuse. 

We closed the year with the Rotary Club Christmas Service and had our 25th anniversary and farewell concert for Cait at the Rugby Club when the five years with Cait as our MD sadly came to an end. At the beginning, we weren’t sure what to expect with such a young and inexperienced MD, but I’m sure you’ll agree Cait was great.  She encouraged us to rise to new challenges and we are very sad to lose her.   As you know we have been looking for a replacement for Cait and all those expressing an interest in the post have been unsuitable.  We are very fortunate that Rupert has kindly stepped into the role so we can continue to hold rehearsals and build on our repertoire.

The committee has worked hard over the year doing all sorts of tasks, besides which I’d like to thank Anne M for spending a lot of time on administration and organization, and Marilyn for representing the sopranos and doing all the ticketing for our events. We are sad to lose her now she is stepping down.  Thanks to Yvonne for her talents organizing our funds, and to Ann S for monitoring the attendance and membership.  Thanks to Chris for reintroducing and running the sadly missed tea break and Josie for taking on a new role with our website and social media.  Thank you also to Jo, our very patient music librarian, Pat for running the £1 square and everyone who helps with the setting up – it is much appreciated.  Finally thanks to Rupert for his invaluable skill and support.

As usual, we have both lost some members and some gained new members over the year and I would like to thank the current membership for your support and hard work.  I am always impressed by your desire to improve and no matter who turns up for rehearsal, you rise to the challenge of sounding good.

  • Treasurers Report

Yvonne Ward checked that everyone present had seen the 2018 Accounts. She explained that income was less than expenditure giving a shortfall of £818 over the year. £857.50 had been raised for the Pathway Project. Following a question from Barbara Hillier she clarified that there was £8026 in the bank at the end of 2018 and £13,737 had been the throughput during the year. Yvonne suggested that this could be discussed further when the Fees were being set.

  • Nominations for 2018 Committee

Helen Klich explained that Marilyn Maguire had stepped down from the Committee and left the choir. She thanked Marilyn for her invaluable contribution.

Audrey Orme proposed that all the other current Officers and Committee members be re-elected and this was seconded by Cheryl Guest.

The proposal was adopted unanimously by the membership present.

Catherine Docherty volunteered to stand for the Committee as Ticket Secretary. Anne Mapley proposed her nomination, Josie Wilson seconded it and she was elected unanimously by the membership present.

  • Fees.

Yvonne Ward proposed that the fees remain at £120 per year as the choir had over £8000 in the bank. The loss experienced during 2018 could be worse during 2019 as several members had recently left affecting income from fees. However, circumstances had changed. During 2018 expenditure for the M.D. was £1700 and the pianist £1300. Due to Rupert Feld’s generosity expenditure during 2019 could be less.

She explained that with current membership, in order to maintain the running costs at 2018 level, fees would need to be raised to £185 per year. However, she proposed that fees be kept to £120 and reviewed later in 2019. Members would need to be aware that this might result in raising fees later in 2019. The situation could change as the M.D. role becomes clearer. Ann Smedley suggested that the choir needs to more actively recruit new members, which would increase income. It was also explained that in 2018 the workshop made a profit but the choir did not organize a concert for it’s own benefit.

There was membership discussion in favour of raising fees at the meeting and some members expressed the view that the fees were very reasonable.

Barbara Hillier proposed that fees be set at £10 a month for the first 3 months of 2019 and then raised to £12 a month from April 1st 2019. This amounts to £138 for the year. This to be reviewed in 6 months. This was seconded by Anne Mapley and adopted unanimously by all those present.

  • Amendment to Constitution

Anne Mapley proposed that the Constitution Membership clause be amended to read :-

‘Membership shall be open to ladies aged 18 years and over’

Although this may not require the choir to have a child safeguarding policy, Barbara Hillier pointed out that vulnerable adults may also require a safeguarding policy to be in place.

The proposal was seconded by Anne Jones and adopted unanimously by those present.

  • Nominations for 2018 Charity

4 nominations were received

  • Footprints Orphanage in Kenya proposed by Margaret Leonard. Despite being unable to be present Margaret  had left leaflets about the project. It was brought to members’ attention that the choir had raised funds at a concert in 2018 and heard about the work the project undertakes.
  • Alzheimers Research UK proposed by Cheryl Guest. Anne Mapley explained that both her mother, and Cheryl’s mother, suffered with dementia. So the research work supported by this charity was important to both of them.
  • Macmillan Cancer Support proposed by Jill Street. Jill explained that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer and had been undergoing treatment. During this time she has met many people who had benefitted from the support Macmillan provides. She explained that they provide emotional support, particularly beneficial where people had not got the support of family and friends as she has. They also provide support and grants for people working and with young children.
  • Myeloma UK proposed by Chris Dixon. Chris explained that her husband had received the diagnosis of this bone marrow cancer 10 years ago. It is an end of life illness with repeated 3 monthly tests, consultant visits and possible treatment. The average survival is 5 years and 15 people nationally are diagnosed each day. John had been lucky. However, treatment has resulted in a collapsed spine, and Chris can no longer wear heels as she is now taller than John ! Other members have also experienced the impact of this illness, notably Kareen Lowther and Helen Klich. Chris is a member of the local support group and the charity states that its is here to support everyone affected by myeloma, and is committed to finding a cure.  

Helen Klich asked that everyone vote for one of the nominations once the AGM was completed

The result of the ballot was that Myeloma UK was voted in It received a majority 7 votes of the 18 cast and was duly adopted as the charity for 2019.

  • A.O.B.

Pat Brant asked if the choir was still looking for an M.D. and was concerned that the choir could not do a concert being led from the piano.

Cheryl Guest explained another choir she is in is led from the piano.

Helen Klich felt that a choir could be led from the piano, as in Lichfield Gospel Choir. She explained that Rupert is going to let the choir know if he feels he can do it, and the Committee were very keen to use Rupert’s skill and enthusiasm. Chris Dixon felt that Rupert would say if he felt he couldn’t lead from the piano.

Helen explained that an option would be to have a conductor with Rupert as M.D. However, this was Rupert’s decision and based on how confident he felt about leading from the piano. The choir has had 3 M.D.s since Rupert joined, and each time there is a period of adjustment. Vicky Smith agreed with this. Anne Jones also commented that the choir needs a pianist but may be able to manage without a conductor.

Rupert Feld commented that he was very keen to be not ‘just standing in’, and for members to come and enjoy singing. Helen Klich commented that rehearsals are getting better each week. Chris Dixon suggested it was down to members to give Rupert more attention when we are singing, and Rupert Feld explained he felt frustration when members were not watching but looking down at copies. Helen Klich suggested communication between choir and leader was always key.

Chris Dixon also related that in the past the choir had lost out in a competition to a choir that was led from the piano.

Sue Bowring suggested that this could be resolved by learning off copy. Rupert Feld explained that we had done this recently with ‘Hallelujah’ and it was hard work for both Rupert and the choir. He reflected it was perhaps a rather complex piece to try this and the choir risked boredom with the weekly repetition. However, it sounded significantly different, so the exercise had paid dividends. Helen Klich suggested another option was to insist members put music down very quickly, which was difficult for some but, she felt she had now learnt to do it.

Rupert Feld explained that he would lead rehearsals with a quick turnover so urged members to say if they needed more time to find music or repeat phrases for clarification. He also reflected that the choir rehearsals are a both a musical and social activity. He asked members to let him know if he is being to too insistent, although he will let members know if chatting becomes a problem.  Rupert, however, recognised that members wished to talk to their neighbours. Helen Klich asked that members respect other sections when they need to listen to learn their parts.

The meeting was closed at 8.40 pm

Kaleidoscope Accounts 2018
£ Bank account 1 Jan 2018 8,691.32 -363.47 + Petty Cash 6.21 8,334.06
Income £ Expenditure £
Subscriptions 3,745.00 MD 2,100.00 Refreshments 52.03 Pianist 1,300.00 £1 Square 71.50 Hall Hire 1,699.50 Concert Expenses 250.00 Stationery 43.99 Ticket Sales 1,119.04 Charity Donation 486.78 Charity Donations 16.00 Insurance 159.55 Hall Hire Deposit Refund 150.00 Web Hosting 14.38 Music 182.80 Equipment 48.39 5,403.57 6,035.39
£ Bank Account 31/12/2018 8,026.03 -330.00 + Petty Cash 6.21 7,702.24
Total 2018 13,737.63 13,737.63

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