Atlanta Musicians Offer Last Minute Counter Proposal

ADAPTISTRATION-GUY-095There are mixed reports in mainstream media about a revised counter-proposal from the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Players’ Association (ASOPA) eleventh hour counterproposal to their employer’s 10/27/2014 4:00pm ET deadline to accept an offer that contained a clause guaranteeing management the right to set the number of full time musicians as they see fit as opposed to certifying a fixed minimum number.

According to an article by Howard Pousner in the 10/27/2014 edition of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the ASOPA amended their offer from 10/23/2014 from defining a minimum number of 77 musicians during the first two years, 85 by the end of the third year, and 89 by the end of the fourth to 77 musicians during the first two years, 84 by the end of the third year, and 88 by the end of the fourth.

No word yet on whether the employer, Woodruff Arts Center (WAC), will consider the offer or reject out of hand. Stay tuned for breaking updates.

Update: reports indicate that boths sides are once again exchanging communication via telephone and through the federal mediator. At this point, the WAC has not announced any additional cancellations.

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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