From the press release that came out today, the San Francisco Symphony has cancelled their three city east coast tour. They were supposed to depart for these concerts this coming Thursday.
The Musicians of the symphony had rejected the federal mediator’s proposal to resume playing concerts while the collective bargaining agreements continue. The tour was ment to include Carnegie Hall on March 20 and 21, New Jersey Performing Arts Center on March 22, and The Kennedy Center on March 23. A quote from the San Francisco press release describes the money issue at hand:
Several proposals by the administration have been rejected by the musicians’ union. The most recent proposal offered increases in musician compensation to achieve a new annual minimum salary of $145,979 with annual increases of 1% and 2% for the latest two-year proposal. Contractual benefits also included a $74,000 maximum annual pension, 10 weeks paid vacation, and full coverage health care plan options with no monthly premium contributions for musicians and their families for three of the four options. Additional compensation for most active musicians also includes radio payments, over-scale, and seniority pay which raises the current average pay for SFS musicians to over $165,000.
I’d like to say this is extremely interesting process to follow. I think that when all of this information that comes out as a result of an organizations issues, it makes them more transparant to the public than during a well functioning year, unfortunately. This is an extremely sad process however, and I am rooting for the musicians and management to come to an agreement soon. I am glad they are fighting and sticking ground.
Also, I am personally a bit annoyed at this issue in particular because I had bought two tickets to see their performance of Mahler’s 9th at the Kennedy Center. Now, I’ll probably end up staying home for a lazy Saturday night!