Get to Know AGMA’s New Soloists Vice President Andrew Stenson

Published May 23, 2024   |  By Musical Artists  |  Post in All Areas

Get to Know AGMA’s Soloists Vice President Andrew Stenson [he/him/his]

Under the new AGMA constitution, every working group and geographic region now has a Vice President to ensure maximum representation of each and every AGMA member. New Soloists Vice President Andrew Stenson joined later in the term following a vacancy, so he was not included in the original announcement. Let's take this opportunity to get to know him better today!

AGMA Member Since: 2009, and this is his first term on the AGMA Board of Governors

First AGMA Production: The Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program

From: Rochester, MN

Currently: Washington, DC

“I first decided to join the AGMA Board of Governors because AGMA came through for us during the pandemic. Thanks to AGMA’s tireless efforts I was able to safely return to work, receive unprecedented financial guarantees for that work, and gain a sense of security and equity I never thought possible. When the Northwest At-Large seat on the Board opened, I knew I wanted to be a part of shaping this better future for our membership.

When former Soloists Vice President Eric Ferring resigned from his position to make the switch over to AGMA’s Professional Staff, I was asked if I would be interested in this leadership role. I’m delighted to have the opportunity to greater advocate for soloist issues.

My top priority is advocating for financial guarantees for independent contractors. This mostly affects soloists, who typically aren’t paid until performances, but is a great precedent to set for anyone who traditionally does a lot of up-front work. During the pandemic, we saw countless people left high and dry, left to foot the bill for temporary housing, role preparation, and countless other expenses required to make this bizarre career possible. I don’t find it unreasonable to have a guarantee that you will not lose money if things go awry that are beyond your control. Fortunately, most of the organizations we’ve worked with have been very receptive to this and we have a number of different blueprints for advance and guaranteed payments for contractors. My hope is that in the near future this will simply be standard business practice.”