Questions About Membership
Can I bring a guest?
Yes. Black Fret memberships include a +1 to each performance. Memberships and event tickets are non-transferable.
Where do you hold your events?
One of the things about Black Fret’s model that sets it apart from a traditional symphony or opera is that we move our event locations constantly. That gives us the chance to expose our members to an interesting and diverse set of locations. These range from upscale (private residences in the hills, rooftops downtown) to downbeat (the finest underground venues) to just plain cool (recording studios, private venues).
Why is there a one-time $100 new member fee?
This helps cover administrative costs of recruiting and onboarding new members.
Why is membership $1,500 annually?
We strive to balance limited membership capacity and our financial goals with annual dues that are achievable for most true music fans throughout our city. (Roughly the same cost as a yearly cable bill.) We want all our members to feel respected, connected, and inspired within an equitable patronage model. All members pay the same annual dues for the same rights and privileges as all other members. While Black Fret offers just one level of membership, we gratefully accept donations in any amount (Make a Payment) to support our mission.
Can I pay in installments?
Yes, when you make a pledge to annual membership, we are happy to accept installment payments toward your annual dues, whether monthly, quarterly, or twice-yearly. Please indicate your intentions in the membership registration form.
Do you have different levels of membership?
Black Fret currently offers just one level of membership. Additionally, Black Fret gratefully accepts donations in any amount (Make a Payment) to support our mission. If hospitality is your thing, please consider becoming a Volunteer.
Do you accept corporate matches?
Yes. Members can take advantage of corporate charitable match programs including those offered by Dell, Apple, Microsoft, Google and more. Many of these programs will only match the portion of the donation for which no value is received. Black Fret allocates 20% of a member’s dues to funding performances, so $1200 a year out of your $1,500 donation is tax-deductible and eligible for corporate match. We recommend you pay $400 directly to Black Fret ($100 new member fee plus $300 in dues) and then sign up for $50/month or $46.16/bi-weekly matched by your employer to fund the remaining $1,200 over the course of the year. Please indicate that you will be using a corporate match in the membership registration form.
How do I find out if my company offers a charitable match?
Visit your employer’s internal website for employee benefits. Or ask your HR representative.
Why limit membership?
We believe our members deserve a premium listening experience and the chance to meet the artists they fund. This can best be achieved in venues with limited seating capacity. Black Fret is a community of dedicated music fans who are enriched by connecting with one another and with local music. We are looking to attract lifetime donors… people who will value a sustained relationship with a broad network of dynamic members and artists, all sharing a common passion for music and dedication to building a new Austin institution to support local musicians. We aim to reward our members and artists with benefits that are empowered by a business model based on continuous growth of an endowment and a legacy right that allows members to pass their limited membership to a child or to a friend.
What is your limit on membership?
Our goal is to sustain $1,000,000 a year in grants and build a cool, fun and endowed Austin institution capable of serving our community in perpetuity. We think that can best be accomplished with as few as 800 members.
Can I donate more than $1,500?
Yes. Members are welcome to pre-pay as many years in membership dues as they like in a single donation. Additionally, Black Fret will gratefully accept larger donations and work with individual donors and corporate sponsors to create custom giving plans. Please indicate your intentions in the membership registration form.
Other than membership, how can I help?
Tell your friends who love music about us and help us grow! Also, Black Fret gratefully accepts donations in any amount (Make a Payment) to support our mission. If hospitality is your thing, consider becoming a Volunteer, to welcome fellow Members and ensure a great vibe.
I’m a musician. How can I help?
Here are a few ways: How Artists Can Help Black Fret
I’m a musician. Can I volunteer?
Yes, but it’s important to understand that any musician who is volunteering will be asked to resign as a Volunteer if they accept an invitation to become a Nominee. Volunteers have strict rules about ways they can lobby members for votes and violation of those rules can result in exclusion from current and future nominations.