Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of Leeds

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DOLMusic
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Parish / Diocese: Diocese of Leeds

Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of Leeds

Post by DOLMusic » Mon Jun 15, 2015 3:13 pm

Dear All,

Just letting you know that there is a position open at the Diocese of Leeds Music Department.

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Post of Director of Organ School and Organist of Leeds Cathedral

The Diocese of Leeds in partnership with The Royal College of Organists wishes to appoint a Director of the Organ School and Cathedral Organist from September 2015. This is a new full time post.

The Diocese of Leeds has the largest church music programme in the United Kingdom. In total it maintains 58 choirs comprising over 2500 children meeting weekly. There are 43 school choirs, four boys' choirs, four girls' choirs, three mixed children’s choirs, two youth choirs, a ground breaking new choir school and a semi-professional adult choir.

Leeds Cathedral operates a programme of eight sung weekly services of Mass and Vespers. National BBC broadcasts are a major feature of the year for all the choirs, with nine taking place in 2014. The Cathedral Choirs enjoy international distribution on the Brilliant Classics label with a 2013 CD of Duruflé’s Complete Choral Works and a forthcoming 2015 release of Arvo Pärt works. The Cathedral has a superb organ and generous acoustic. The instrument was completely restored and augmented in 2010 by Klais of Bonn.

Parishes in the Diocese of Leeds have invested heavily in recent years in many new or restored organs. This portfolio of instruments is impressive, including a number of new mechanical organs sited in west end galleries. Two high schools also have pipe organs on site. The Organ School will complement the Singing Programme and the success of the existing model gives us confidence that it will flourish.

The Organ School is to be set up in partnership with The Royal College of Organists (RCO), the national body for accrediting and training organists and choir directors, with an international reputation for excellence. The RCO is keen to broaden its activities and has been attracted to the reputation of the Diocese of Leeds Music Programme because of its scale and quality.

An application pack is available from our website here: http://www.dioceseofleedsmusic.org.uk/news/fullstory.php?newsid=190

Closing date: 18 June 2015

Southern Comfort
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by Southern Comfort » Mon Jun 15, 2015 9:11 pm

This looks like an exciting opportunity.

But is £21,530 a realistic salary for a full-time 37+ hours a week these days, especially if you have to provide your own car, etc?

Just askin'

oopsorganist
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by oopsorganist » Mon Jun 15, 2015 9:27 pm

You get a uniform provided.
uh oh!

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keitha
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by keitha » Tue Jun 16, 2015 12:56 pm

Having looked at the job specification and what they want for their money the salary is low - a newly-qualified teacher outside the London area will start on, I believe, £22,023 (and some would say this this is too low), and teachers generally have reasonable annual increments in the first part of the pay scale - which don't seem to be on offer here!
Keith Ainsworth

IncenseTom
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Parish / Diocese: Diocese of Leeds

Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by IncenseTom » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:23 pm

From what I know of the situation, and I really do not know all the details, the Leeds Music department are really trying to save every penny they can, so I would imagine they would like to offer more money if they were in a position to do so.

Perhaps if they can't attract the candidate they're after, they might have to up the offer if they find a few more coins down the back of the sofa.

Given the tight financial situation, I think it's good that they're creating this post at all. I wish them the best of luck in advancing what is already a remarkable department.

MARYFA
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Parish / Diocese: DIOCESE of LEEDS

Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by MARYFA » Wed Jun 17, 2015 2:31 pm

The Diocese of Leeds was reported to be £1.3 million in the red only a few weeks ago. The Cathedral Music
Fund target for this year is £12,250 of which only £2,235 has been raised so far. The organ fund target is
£700,000 of which £129,859 has so far been raised. Where is this new salary of £21,000+ coming from?

oopsorganist
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by oopsorganist » Wed Jun 17, 2015 5:26 pm

£1.3 million deficit for the last year.

The Diocese is £10 million in debt. To be fair, when you owe that much, you might as well borrow a bit more. A million pounds isn't that much nowadays - a reasonable house in the area might cost a quarter of a million. You have to put it in context. 10 million pounds is probably only the cost of a few road mending schemes or 5 Children's Centres.

(Public sector worker feeling the pain of Local Authority austerity measures!).
uh oh!

Southern Comfort
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by Southern Comfort » Thu Jun 18, 2015 9:14 am

If I understand the situation correctly, the vast bulk of the money required to run the enormous Leeds music scheme comes not from the diocese but from local authorities who stump up large quantities of money for people who go into schools to do music with the children. Ben Saunders tapped into a cash cow that no one else had previously noticed.

How long that will continue is anyone's guess. I was listening to a programme on the radio the other day about how local authorities are cutting back on music teaching and no longer pay for lessons. If families want their children to continue having the benefit of music tuition, they are increasingly having to go private with the same teachers who are now no longer paid for by the LEA.

That said, I have always had the impression about the personnel in the Leeds scheme that they are (a) too many in number, (b) overworked and (c) underpaid, especially for the amount of work they do, let alone the responsibilities they have. One wonders whether a smaller number of people each being paid more would be better, and less open to accusations of the Church exploiting people's good will which I have heard from some commentators.

oopsorganist
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by oopsorganist » Thu Jun 18, 2015 1:06 pm

Maybe this is veering off topic , maybe not

Leeds Education has always had a very good peripatetic music service - it is now part of Artforms which is a quality service combining the creative arts and media and the museum service. Everything has a jazzed up name now, and loads of acronyms and a funding stream that is convoluted.

Basically schools will have a budget allocation for the music or creative curriculum and they can therefore choose how to spend it. Additionally there is some funding from central government and a new initiative (hurrah) - The National Music Plan apparently, from which Leeds Authority will get some £2.9 million. Artforms therefore charges schools, 60% of whatever price they charge, for whatever commissioned service they request. The other 40% comes from government funding or authority funding which is kind of the same. In fact, it all looks pretty much the same now as it did 10 years ago but people charge other people for this, that and the other.

So Leeds generally has had a good music service in schools. It has outstanding Music Centres across the city evenings and weekends for all age groups and all interests with subsidised tuition. it's a good place to be.

So it would be supposed that the Diocese charges Catholic schools for a commissioned services, if it provides to them. And gets the other 40 % from the same budget as the Artforms service. So I would guess it has annexed a cow that was already providing milk. I would hope that there is not an unequal share of funding for the various sectors. Also, I hope that Catholic schools also access Artforms.

All the accounts and what not should be in public domain. I think if I remember rightly reading somewhere that Leeds Diocese access a range of other charitable funders and also the Lottery. Good for them. (Or us). They give talks around the country about how others can do this. It rather depends on if the local education authority has a budget for music and how this is deployed in the great era of cutbacks. And of course, on the mission statement of the Diocese, where the priorities lie. Social justice? Evangelisation? Ecumenical-ism? Parish and Community Development? Liturgical orthodoxy?

I just read up the Diocesan Financial Statement. That was interesting reading. It's a big business sure enough. I don't think the huge deficits (which are balanced by huge reserves I think if I understood it - although being a bear of little brain.....) are caused by the Music Department. A bit maybe. But only a piddle in an ocean. So

They should pay and Organie Person bucket loads if they are worth the job, and if the job is worth doing. Quite so. A labourer is worthy of her hire.

But I am fairly sure I would want more from a Diocese than some CDs and a really big organ/choir. Certainly, as a parishioner I would be expecting more something or other.

By the way, the cathedral organ cost so much to repair because it was the postage of all those pipes to somewhere in Eastern Europe. That's what I think anyway.
uh oh!

oopsorganist
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by oopsorganist » Thu Jun 18, 2015 1:31 pm

Oh, yes. Forgot to say.

Teachers have pay scales recognised by Unions etc. This vacancy should be remunerated in line with those and with the responsibilities envisaged.

Otherwise it is unjust and is exploitation.
uh oh!

MARYFA
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Parish / Diocese: DIOCESE of LEEDS

Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by MARYFA » Thu Jun 18, 2015 4:30 pm

The Diocesan Music service operates in other LEAs , Bradford, Kirklees, Wakefield, North Yorkshire.
Their funding arrangements for music and the arts are presumably different from those of Leeds.

oopsorganist
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by oopsorganist » Thu Jun 18, 2015 7:28 pm

I don't know about other education authorities. They will all be under stress but also, all be in line to get some dosh from Michael Gove's National Music Plan. £82.5 million is the national figure.

Presumably Kirklees, Bradford, North Yorkshire and Calderdale contribute in some way.

But I don't know that the Music Department makes a profit? Probably not. In which case, Leeds must believe it has good reasons to act as it does. Perhaps there is a critical shortage of organists just now? Ho hum. :|
uh oh!

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keitha
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by keitha » Thu Jun 18, 2015 10:56 pm

Let me say at once that, although I don't agree entirely with the way the Leeds project operates, it is a tremendous achievement already, and I wish it every success for the future - and I know how hard it has been. It is just a great pity that those working on the project are paid so poorly. My sadness is that our Church has so little money to finance anything - even in the seemingly wealthier areas in the South. I know of very few parishes in my diocese that cover their normal running costs from their normal income (as opposed to what should be extraordinary income such as fetes, bazaars etc).
Keith Ainsworth

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mcb
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by mcb » Mon Jun 22, 2015 1:59 pm

Southern Comfort wrote:If I understand the situation correctly, the vast bulk of the money required to run the enormous Leeds music scheme comes not from the diocese but from local authorities who stump up large quantities of money for people who go into schools to do music with the children. Ben Saunders tapped into a cash cow that no one else had previously noticed.

I don't know that it's fair to call it a cash cow: the Leeds choral programme operates in a competitive market, and it takes hard work to provide the service that they do. Whatever the reservations some people might have about the workings of the programme, there's no suggestion that it generates easy money.
Southern Comfort wrote:That said, I have always had the impression about the personnel in the Leeds scheme that they are (a) too many in number, (b) overworked

Not quite sure how these can both be true at the same time.

Southern Comfort
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Re: Post of Director of Organ School and Organ, Diocese of L

Post by Southern Comfort » Mon Jun 22, 2015 8:57 pm

I think it is true to say that Ben Saunders was the first to notice that a lot of LEA money was available to finance choral music in schools, at least in his part of the world. All credit to him. No one is saying the money is easy, just that there is a lot of it around which had not previously been used for choral work associated with a Roman Catholic diocese. One wonders what the LEAs had been spending it on previously, if anything.

As mcb's other point is concerned, when the scheme first began there appeared to be just one other person apart from Ben doing the work (Chris McElroy). From a music department of two, as things became established, the department mushroomed so that there are now 11 staff members listed on the website (not counting three choral and organ scholars), including two admin staff. Some have wondered if the work is actually there to support such a number of staff. From the advertisements that have appeared over the years, it seems that each new position is less than generously remunerated for the amount of work expected (and we all know that nominal working hours are likely to be considerably exceeded, as with all church musicians). As the available "pot" is being progressively divided among more and more people.... well, you get my drift. The latest position is co-sponsored by the RCO, who are presumably contributing to the salary, which will no doubt help.

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