Tag Archives | Philadelphia Orchestra

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Peter Dobrin Couldn’t Be More Right

The Philadelphia Inquirer published a commentary article by Peter Dobrin on 10/7/2016 that asks a number of difficult questions related to executive accountability during periods of labor unrest. He examines the issues via his home ensemble, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and he provides a decidedly clear perspective. The article begins with his observations vis-à-vis the orchestra rising to artistic challenges not only via traditional benchmarks of excellence but for recent efforts related to outreach in nontraditional venues. The vision of the future, actually, is startlingly obvious: The orchestra must be critically unassailable when […]

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How To Look Like The Smartest Person In The Room When Talking About This Season’s Labor Disputes

The weekend saw some extraordinary events as the musicians from the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO) and Philadelphia Orchestra Association (POA) went on strike. Since that news broke on Friday, 9/30/2016 there are no shortages of presumptions floating around so in order to provide a clear frame of reference, let’s examine some of the key points and misnomers. IMPORTANT UPDATE: As of Sunday, 10/2/2016, the Philadelphia Orchestra is no longer on strike. According to a musician press statement, the new three year agreement “[does] not achieve our goal of being compensated on a […]

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Negotiation Update 2016

Most professional orchestra collective bargaining agreements expire during the summer months and since the economic downturn, it is increasingly common to see groups continue negotiating past the current agreement’s expiration date. A decade ago, that used be cause for alarm but in today’s environment, it is practically standard operating procedure assuming groups don’t manage to wrap things up months in advance. Last season witnessed nearly a dozen middle to large budget size orchestras cross that line and the count for this year is a bit lower. Out of the 10 groups with […]

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An Updated Look At Top-Tier Musician Compensation 2016

Currently, two of the top eight orchestras with the highest base musician annual salary are negotiating new collective bargaining agreements: National Symphony and Philadelphia Orchestra. Interestingly enough, both of these ensembles are in positions where the outcome of those negotiations will likely have a larger impact on their future competitiveness than some of the upcoming negotiations for their peers. In order to visualize these distinctions, here’s a chart illustrating the current “Big Eight” base musician annual salaries from the 2009/10 season through those with agreements reaching out to the 2017/18 season. Over […]

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Tensions Build In Philadelphia Orchestra Negotiations

One item we missed last week was an article about growing tensions in the Philadelphia Orchestra Association (POA) collective bargaining negotiations. Written by Peter Dobrin and published in the 9/8/2016 edition of the Philadelphia Inquirer, the article provides a glimpse of what’s happening at that orchestra’s bargaining table. The article has a few items of note worth pointing out: The Kaiser Report is an expensive dust collector. The contract about to expire is an unusual one-year deal agreed to while arts consultant Michael M. Kaiser of the DeVos Institute of Arts Management […]

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