ACSO eNEWS provides updates and opportunities for California's orchestras and classical music field.

March 8, 2018

2018 Kris Sinclair Leadership Award Deadline is March 16
The Kris Sinclair Leadership Award is given to an ACSO Organizational Member that demonstrates recent successful leadership initiatives by its staff and/or board in one or more of the following areas: finance, governance, staff development, audience development, education, or community engagement.

This $5,000 award is made possible by the Kris Sinclair Fund for Professional Development, consisting of contributions intentionally made in Kris Sinclair's name to support professional development and technical assistance offered by the Association of California Symphony Orchestras (ACSO). Sinclair was the executive director of the Association for 31 years and provided members with technical assistance, professional development opportunities, and consultation on a myriad of orchestra management topics.

Applicants must be current ACSO Organizational Members at the date of the application and must remain a member in good standing throughout the award period.  The deadline to apply is Friday, March 16, 2018.

The Kris Sinclair Leadership Award Committee will review applications as they are received and will determine the award winner by Friday, April 20, 2018.

Click here for more information and to apply.  Questions?  Contact ACSO at  or 800-495-2276.
New ACSO Website and Database Coming in April
We are pleased to announce that ACSO will be transitioning to a brand new, more user-friendly website and integrated membership database next month. What does this mean for you?
You will continue to be able to access all the features and information currently found at, such as the member-only content, the job postings, conference and program registration, the monthly concert listings, and online membership renewal. Plus, the new website will not only be more aesthetically pleasing and contemporary in look and feel, but it will also be mobile-responsive, so you can connect with us easily from your tablets and smart phones.
You will also be better able to manage your ACSO membership because all dues-paying members, whether you are part of a member organization or you are an individual member, will be set up with a unique profile with a username and password that you can use to log in to check on your membership status, renew your membership, update your contact information, manage your communication preferences, and register for conference or other ACSO events. This is the first time that ACSO has been able to offer you control of your own membership profile.
Because this is a big step forward for ACSO's technology, we know there may be some initial bumps in the road as we get everyone used to the new website and membership database. But please know that we want to make this as seamless as possible and will help you set up your profiles and navigate the new website.
After we go live with the new and improved in early April, we will send out additional "how to" information to get you started, as well as conduct some orientation webinars so that you can learn all the ins and outs of our new systems. And as always, we are just a phone call or email away.

Upcoming Online Learning Opportunities 

Stepping Up to the Plate: How CA is Responding to New Policies
March 19, 2018 - 11AM-12PM

Join CalNonprofits for this webinar. Last year brought staggering changes in federal policies, and this year promises more of the same. Whether it's taxes, immigration or the federal budget, what happens in Washington affects us here in California. And as the largest state in the union and a strong driver of the nation's economy, California often sets an example for other states to follow.

In this interactive program, we'll learn about how recent federal actions impact California's nonprofits, the philanthropic sector, and the communities they serve, and how California's leaders are responding.

Click here for more information and to register for this program.

Webinar for El Sistema Programs
March 22, 2018 - 8:30AM-9:30AM

Join El Sistema USA for this webinar. Sunshine Deffner, Director of Operations and Education for the California Symphony, shares about their  El Sistema-based Sound Minds program's violin kit: a tool for the youngest students to learn how to properly care for and hold a cardboard violin before graduating to the real instrument. Deffner will cover the kit's evolution for the Symphony's program and how the process is improving interest in the program across communities and internal and external stakeholders. Learn how Sound Minds turned a kitchen counter project into the most engaging event of the year for students and donors alike! Cost: free for El Sistema USA members; $25 for non-members.

Click here for more information and to register for this program.
New W-4 Released: What Employers Need to Know

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released a new Form W-4 (Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate) for 2018. Employees use the Form W-4 to establish marital status and withholding allowances for federal income tax withholding calculations. Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about the new W-4.

Q: Where can I find the 2018 W-4?
A: The 2018-W-4 can be found here

Q: Why did the W-4 change?
A: The IRS typically releases a new W-4 each year, but the 2018 form was delayed because of the enactment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) in late 2017. Among other things, the TCJA increased the standard deduction, removed personal exemptions, increased the child tax credit, limited or discontinued certain deductions, and changed the tax rates and brackets beginning in 2018. The IRS updated the Form W-4 to reflect the changes made by the law.

Click here to read more FAQs on the new W-4 Form.
National Arts Marketing and Ticketing Conference

Join ArtsReach, May 15-16, 2018 in San Francisco for the National Arts Marketing, Development and Ticketing Conference

Sometimes life (and business) throws us curveballs. That's why we are coming together right now to collectively think outside the box office and blaze new trails for revenue generation: with fresh, hands-on interactive exercises, more of the vital content our Arts Reach delegates love, a special Digital Marketing Track and powerful programs with luminaries like Doug McLennan, Editor,

The key word is collaborate for this convening. If you're going to chart a bold new course for your organization, it's best to have the entire team on board at the inception. That's why you can get the lowest price and bring two colleagues for free when you register by March 16. That's three for the price of one. Each additional registration is just $199.

Can't spare the entire team all at once? Understood! ArtsReach will allow two colleagues to time-share one registration.

Also, change starts at the top. Regardless of whether your CEO, Executive Director, Dean, Artistic Director, Managing Director, Managing Producer or President is registered to attend the full conference - we'd like them to be our complimentary guest for all sessions on Friday, March 16, from noon to five, which includes our networking reception, roundtable discussions over lunch and then an Afternoon Intensive with audience development guru Bob Harlow, sponsored by The Wallace Foundation.

Click here for more information and to register.
Upcoming Dates and Reminders

April 16
ACSO Board of Directors Meeting - Los Angeles, CA

August 9-11
ACSO 2018 Annual Conference - Sacramento, CA