Rappahannock Concert Association, Inc.
P.O. Box 342
Heathsville VA 22473-0342
Mission Statement Provide quality live performances to a subscriber base and the broader community on the Northern Neck. Support and fund music education to the region’s youth.
Web and Social Media
September 30, 2017 Concert
Multi-Media Comments

RCA presented a brilliant young pianist, Misuzu Tanaka, at a Beethoven/Prokofiev solo concert on November 15, 2015.

CEO/Executive Director Mrs. Martha Tallent
Board Chair Ms Martha D. Tallent
Board Chair Company Affiliation Community Volunteer
Contact Information
Address P.O. Box 342
Heathsville, VA 224730342
Telephone 703 577-3553
E-mail info@rappahannockconcerts.org
History and Background
Year of Incorporation 2000
Financial Summary
Revenue vs Expense Bar Graph - All Years
Expense Breakdown Bar Chart - All Years
Projected Revenue $52,700.00
Projected Expenses $52,700.00
Additional Documents
Education Awards 2011 - 20172017View
Subscriber Survey Report2016View
Online Survey Summary2016View
Subscriber Survey Results2015View
We have doubled information found on our web site, www.rappahannockconcerts.org over the past two years.  In addition to adding a Paypal capability for concert/subscription purchase, we have been able to post professional critiques of musicians; videos of public and student concerts, and archived "Greatest RCA Hits" of artists who have topped our annual survey results. We have surveyed our audience every year for the past four years, for the first time in 2016, using an online survey instrument.
Mission Provide quality live performances to a subscriber base and the broader community on the Northern Neck. Support and fund music education to the region’s youth.

2016-2017 Season:

  • Present seven live concerts by professional musicians.
  • Provid five student concerts and clinics, reaching 1,700 students from five Northern Neck public schools. Students are 60% free/reduced price lunch eligible.
  • Granted $3,400 to area public school music teachers.
  • Provided use of our performance Steinway to three other community organizations and four student performances.  In 2009, we raised $43,000 to purchase the Steinway, housed with our partners, the Northumberland County Public Schools in Heathsville, VA. 
Goals 2017-2018 Season:
  • Increase subscriber base 5%.
  • Confirm and present seven evening concerts for 2017-2018 season.  One concert will be held at a different venue, Warsaw, VA, to better serve residents in Richmond, Essex, and Westmoreland Counties.
  • Present four student concerts during the school day. 
  • Organize a Master Class for violin students.
  • Double funding for publicity: Upgrade RCA's web site; Initiate paid radio ads; increase ads in local newspapers.
  • Enhance Facebook page.
  • Maintain or increase revenue by attracting new audiences: African-American population and younger residents, 20's, 30's and 40's.  Our traditional audience is aging out: our older, more financially stable residents are gradually becoming unable to attend concerts, and recent retirees are not moving to our area in the numbers previously attained. 
  • Develop special events to raise funds, such as a summer festival or benefit concert.
  • Increase annual grants to local music teachers, from $3,400 to $5,000.
  • Hire professional marketer, $1,000. Hire a professional publications designer, $500.
  • Increase student concerts from two to six; now budgeted $1,200.  (A typical concert musician charges $600 for each student program.) This would enable us to budget $3,600 for student programs.

 UPDATE:  In May 2017 RCA received a bequest of $13,700 from a former board member.  The current board voted to spend it on music education, and held focus groups of area music teachers, foundations, school board executives, and daycare & aftercare organizations (Peninsula YMCA branches and the Boys and Girls Club in Kilmarnock).  We identified two student populations without music instruction: 1)  there is no strings program in elementary schools; 2) there is no professional music instruction for infants and toddlers to age three.  We have created concepts for three year pilot programs to fill these needs.  We will apply to foundations, hoping to triple our bequest:  $15,000 annually for strings for 3 years; 4) $1500 annually for 3 years to train "minstrels" to give research-based programs to daycare/nursery schools.  

The Rappahannock Concert Association began in 1983 with a mission of providing quality, live concerts to a permanent subscriber audience in the Northern Neck area.  The mission of supporting and funding music education for the region's youth was added at a later date. This fledgling organization's handful of dedicated volunteer founders from Essex and Richmond counties, brought professional, live concerts to the rural Northern Neck with performances in a variety of venues.

In 2000, RCA incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization run by an all-volunteer board of directors. In 2005, RCA began contracting its concert performers to give workshops and concerts to student audiences as well.  In 2009, RCA moved to its new, state of the art home in the Northumberland County Schools Performing Arts Theater, premiering its first concert in September 2009 with a pianist, using a performance Steinway for which RCA raised $43,000. RCA has been presenting professional artists continuously since 1983, and has provided at least two student concerts annually since 2005.  In 2011, RCA initiated a giving program to area music teachers, to supplement their shrinking budgets.  The first year we gave $245 to two teachers; in 2017, we gave $3400 to seven teachers.
CEO Statement

In May 2017, RCA was awarded a gift from the W.D. and Carolyn Gray Trust of $13,700.  Carolyn Gray was a former RCA board member. At its May meeting, the Board of Directors voted to use the entire gift to support music education on the Northern Neck. 

 During the summer of 2017, a task force to identify the best use of this wonderful gift.  We identified two areas of music education missing from local curricula:  Professional music instruction for infants and toddlers to age three; and strings instruction.  We are researching partners and 'off the shelf' programs to fill these needs.  See above needs statement for more details about our progress.
In November 2015, RCA presented Misuzu Tanaka, a solo pianist who performed a program of Beethoven and Prokofiev.  Her performance was reviewed by Professor Emeritus Carolyn Plummer, Notre-Dame, as an exceptional new talent.  In addition, RCA has secured the support of the US Navy Outreach Program which funded a Woodwind Ensemble for a free public concert and three student concerts, also in November 2015.  The organization is increasing its support of public school music teachers with enhanced outreach and funding.  In October 2016, we presented The Glenn Miller Orchestra to our largest audience ever up to that time (402).  Also in October, we hosted the US Navy's rock band to give a free public performance plus two student concerts.  Our board recognized a need to serve the African-American population on the Northern Neck, and contracted the Masters of Soul to perform in September 2017.  For that effort, we received a $3000 grant to partially cover their fee.  We were rewarded with another record attendance:  463.
At our April 2015 Board meeting, we voted to eliminate student ticket fees completely.  Students are always free to all concerts.
Board Chair Statement

We are consistently successful at contracting world-class musicians to perform in our remote community.  Audience testimonials marvel at our ability to pay for such high-quality talent with the affordable subscription price of just under $15 per concert (based on subscription price of 7 concerts for $100).

The local counties' school boards write glowing thank you notes regarding the student concerts and clinics our visiting artists present each year.   As budgets for music education continue to decrease, our gifts to area music teachers are much appreciated ($3,400 gifted in May 2017).

At the April 19, 2017 strategic planning session, the board conducted its 2nd SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats).  Number 1 threat:  Our rural/retired population is decreasing, and therefore our subscriber/volunteer base is decreasing.  We decided to reduce the number of concerts from 7 to 5, with 3 being performed by nationally known artists.  This year we will focus on attracting underserved populations to our concerts: African-Americans,  Hispanics, and the younger population (30's and 40's).  Our donors and board members voted to contract the Four Freshmen, A Duke Ellington Tribute, and "Capitol Focus Jazz Orchestra," a Dixieland group of college-age musicians from DC.  The remaining two concerts are classical performers, a piano/clarinet duo, and the Washington Saxophone Quartet.  

Areas of Service
Areas Served
Northern Neck
Mathews County
Essex County
We serve the Northern Neck Counties of  Northumberland, Lancaster, Richmond, Westmoreland; Middle Peninsula Counties of Middlesex, Mathews (with whom we have a reciprocal ticket privilege with "Concerts-on-the-Bay") and Gloucester.
Board Chair
Board Chair Ms Martha D. Tallent
Company Affiliation Community Volunteer
Term May 2017 to May 2019
Email tallent@va.metrocast.net;
Board CoChair
Board CoChair Mrs. Martha Tallent
Company Affiliation Retired
Term Feb 2017 to May 2020
Email tallent@va.metrocast.net
Board of Directors
Board Members
Mrs. Carol Cole Community Volunteer
Mrs. Pamela Collins Community Volunteer
Ms. Nancy Gates Community Volunteer
Dr. Thomas Gibson Community Volunteer
Mr. Bennie Green Community Volunteer
Mrs. Lien Groenwold Community Volunteer
Ms. Martha Hall Community Volunteer
Mrs. Barbara Hays Chesapeake Academy Music Teacher
Mrs. Ruth Huber Community Volunteer
Mrs. Eve Jordan Community Volunteer
Mr. Bob Kane Community Volunteer
Mrs. Nellie Landrum Community Volunteer
Mrs. Latasha Lee Chorale Teacher
Mrs. Dolores Meo Community Volunteer
Ms. Sue Nunn Community Volunteer
ADM John Sigler Community Volunteer
Mrs. Nancy Stogowski Community Volunteer
Mrs. Martha Tallent Community Volunteer
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 2
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 16
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 4
Female 14
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 2
Board Meeting Attendance % 80
Written Board Selection Criteria? Yes
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? No
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 95
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 100
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 9
Risk Management Provisions
General Property Coverage
Commercial General Liability
Standing Committees
Other Boards
The tables below contain information about other groups that advise this nonprofit on operations and projects.
Advisory Board Members
Mrs. Jan Bates Retired Children's Librarian, Northumberland Public Library
We keep attendance records in our meetings minutes but maintain no attendance spreadsheet.  We estimate a 80% attendance record.  Our volunteer board are mostly retired:  of the 15, 2 hold full-time jobs.  We are a working board:  every board member signs up for two of our eight committees.  95% make donations above their subscriptions, and 100% give volunteer time to produce concerts and reach out to local schools.
Executive Director
Executive Director Mrs. Martha Tallent
Experience Decades of volunteer experience.  Sings with the "Sweet Adelines" of Richmond.
Former CEOs
Susan Nunn May 2013 - Sept
Ms. Carolyn Scarbrough May 2010 - May 2014
Senior Staff
Mrs. Lyn Conley Administrator
Mrs. Julie Stanley Owner, At Home Printing
Full Time Staff 0
Part Time Staff 2
Volunteers 18
Contractors 0
Retention Rate 100
Organization has a Fundraising Plan? Under Development
Organization has a Strategic Plan? Yes
Years Strategic Plan Considers 5
Date Strategic Plan Adopted June 2013
Management Succession Plan? Under Development
Organization Policy and Procedures Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistleblower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy No
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy No
Northern Neck Counties' School Boards.
Description On Saturday, September 30, 2017 at 7:30 pm, The Masters of Soul will present iconic names in the history of popular music, discovered in the 60's in the Motor City of Detroit, MI.  Six vocalists and four musicians play and sing tribute to The Temptations, Gladys Knight & the Pips, Marving Gaye and Tammi Terrell, Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, the Four Tops, Diana Ross & the Supremes, and many more.
Population Served Adults
Budget $8,000.00
Short Term Success We have already received a $3000 grant to allay the fee for this ensemble, and we hope to attract a larger-than-usual single ticket audience in addition to our subscriber audience.
Long Term Success We confirmed this ensemble thinking they are more relevant to our African-American community, 25% of Northumberland County's population.  At the same time, this genre is beloved by everyone!
Description Concert on Friday, November 17, 2017 at 7:30 pm. Tom Gallant on oboe joins these ambassadors of Hungarian string quartet culture.  The award-winning group toured with great success in almost all European countries, as well as in the US, Japan, China, India, Australia and New Zealand.  They have recorded the complete Haydn, Beethoven and Schubert quartets, among others.
Population Served Adults
Budget $6,500.00
Short Term Success We will receive kudos from the attending audience.
Long Term Success Classical strings is a popular genre for our subscribers audience, a mature, highly educated population.  The majority of our donors love this old music, and while we don't expect to draw from other populations, we want to accommodate the financial supporters of our organization.
Description Concert on Saturday, March 10, 2018 at 7:30 pm. Ciaran is a Phantom of the Opera star, and will be accompanied by Heather Bixler, an award-winning Celtic fiddler.  Along with another vocalist, they will perform a beautiful musical mix of timeless Irish classics, familiar Broadway show stoppers and moving inspirational favorites.  "Ciaran Sheehan has a crisp, polished voice and a presence to match."  Ben Brantley, The New York Times. 
Budget $5,000.00
Short Term Success Observation on concert night.
Long Term Success These polished performers will add to our reputation of bringing professional world-class music to our remote area.

Saturday, May 19, 2018, 7:30 pm:  Known to his many fans as “Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen, George Frayne IV helped to invent a whole new style of music during the early 1970’s, a period regarded as the height of rock innovation. His band was one of the original groups to fuse divergent strains of American roots music – from stripped down basic rock and roll to western swing.

Population Served Adults
Budget $4,200.00
Long Term Success This concert will add to our reputation of consistently bringing high-quality live artists to our rural neighborhood.
Student Concerts, October 2017:
Colleen Potter Thorburn, Harpist, gave two performances to Richmond and Lancaster elementary school students.  At a focus group of music teachers, the participants were asked to choose artists from a list of VCA performers.  They chose Ms. Thorburn, because they thought the harp would be appealing and instructive to elementary students.  Ms. Thorburn performed for $500.
US Navy Fleet Forces Rock Band, "The Four Star Edition," gave two performances to middle and high school students in Northumberland and Richmond County students.  This was the third year in a row that the Fleet Forces Band sent an ensemble to us, at no cost to us.
Population Served K-12 (5-19 years)
Budget $0.00
Short Term Success
 Anecdotally, here is a scene from the rock band's performance at Rappahannock High School in Richmond County: At the end of the performance, the band's vocalist said, "We always end with a patriotic song - everyone stand up, get out your cell phones and light them up!" The student body stood with arms around each other, held up their lighted phones and sang "God Bless America."
The Navy musicians always perform in uniform, and answer many questions about the value of practice, discipline and service. 
The short-term success is the heartfelt thanks from school staff, and the obvious joy of the students. 
Long Term Success As a remote and under-served area, even financially capable families have scant access to quality live music.  Music teachers, principals, and school board staff express their gratitude for our student education program.  Our goal for the coming year is to provide music appreciation instruction prior to each concert, in order to enhance the student experience.  We have been producing student concerts since 2005, and will continue for the foreseeable future.  
CEO/ED/Board Comments

1) Since 1983, our mission has been to develop a subscription audience on the Northern Neck, where patrons can pay in advance for five-seven live concerts ($100).  However, we are finding that our year-around population is decreasing steadily, and we need to attract more weekend and summers-only residents to purchase single tickets in order to reach our revenue goals.  We have in March 2017 launched a Facebook page and used its "Boost a Post" to market our concerts.   In April, we revised our Mission Statement to include "concerts for the broader community," including 30 & 40 somethings and the African American community.

Fiscal Year
Projected Revenue $52,700.00
Projected Expenses $52,700.00
Spending Policy N/A
Form 990s
IRS Letter of Exemption
Detailed Financials
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201720162015
Program Expense$40,254$29,458$29,062
Administration Expense$3,342$2,455$5,755
Fundraising Expense$8,024$0$2,371
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.291.131.12
Program Expense/Total Expenses78%92%78%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue76%0%31%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201720162015
Total Assets$52,763$36,425$35,722
Current Assets$7,094$25,215$6,576
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$0$0$0
Total Net Assets$52,763$36,425$35,722
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201720162015
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities------
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201720162015
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
State Charitable Solicitaions Permit
Solicitations Permit
Solicitations Permit 4/2017View
Organization Comments

2016 End Year

Total Revenues Amount:  $42,570  Actual Expenses: $44,953

We used our money-market account to cover the shortfall.