More Good News From The 11th Hour

It seems the San Antonio Symphony isn’t the only group managing to pull up at the last moment in order to avoid a work stoppage. Mark Stryker at the Detroit Free Press reports that the management and musicians at the Detroit Symphony are near an agreement as the major issue of minimum base salary has been adequately addressed by the end of the proposed contract…

The article goes on to report that although Detroit’s previous contract has officially expired on Monday of this week, the players are not scheduled to return until Tuesday of next week, meaning both sides have had a bit of wiggle room in the negotiation time line. As such, unless something unforeseen derails negotiations, that extra time has been put to good use.

So that leaves Pacific Symphony and Omaha Symphony in the negotiation watch, am I missing anyone?

On an unrelated note: today is the final day for orchestras in this year’s Adaptistration Orchestra Website Review to complete the review survey. All 84 orchestras in the review have received instructions on how to complete the survey but if anyone needs an emergency deadline extension or a copy of the instructions and link to the online survey, send me an email or call at 708-445-2675.

The reviews were completed earlier this week and I have to say that there are some big surprises in store for this year but you’ll have to wait until 9/17-9/21 to find out.

About Drew McManus

"I hear that every time you show up to work with an orchestra, people get fired." Those were the first words out of an executive's mouth after her board chair introduced us. That executive is now a dear colleague and friend but the day that consulting contract began with her orchestra, she was convinced I was a hatchet-man brought in by the board to clean house.

I understand where the trepidation comes from as a great deal of my consulting and technology provider work for arts organizations involves due diligence, separating fact from fiction, interpreting spin, as well as performance review and oversight. So yes, sometimes that work results in one or two individuals "aggressively embracing career change" but far more often than not, it reinforces and clarifies exactly what works and why.

In short, it doesn't matter if you know where all the bodies are buried if you can't keep your own clients out of the ground, and I'm fortunate enough to say that for more than 15 years, I've done exactly that for groups of all budget size from Qatar to Kathmandu.

For fun, I write a daily blog about the orchestra business, provide a platform for arts insiders to speak their mind, keep track of what people in this business get paid, help write a satirical cartoon about orchestra life, hack the arts, and love a good coffee drink.

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1 thought on “More Good News From The 11th Hour

  1. Hi Drew,

    I think Chicago is in or starting negotiations at this moment (see

    Right you are Russell, I guess I was only thinking about those who are engaged in what is a publicly known contentious negotiation. Regardless, I should have made that clear in the article so thanks for making that distinction. ~ Drew McManus

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