Fort Worth Symphony Reaches Tentative Deal And No Details From Pittsburgh Symphony

One day after a report that bargaining was stalled, the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra (FWSO) announced it reached a tentative agreement. The Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS), which had been mediating the negotiations, released a press statement on 12/04/2016 announcing the tentative deal.

Adaptistration People 133The musicians have scheduled a ratification meeting for Wednesday, 12/07/2016 but as of now, there is no work if the musicians’ negotiation team plans to recommend their colleagues accept or reject the offer. Likewise, no details about the tentative agreement’s terms have been released.

The FWSO has cancelled all concert events through the end of 2016, however, if an agreement is reached, it wouldn’t be unusual to see the organization reactivate events or schedule something new to reduce the sting for ticket buyers who missed out on concerts.

Speaking of recent agreements, although the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO) recently ended their work stoppage, they aren’t in any rush to release details about the agreement.

When asked for a copy of the changes between the most recent and latest master agreement, Micah Howard, Chair, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Committee, declined to provide written details. Likewise, Louise Cavanaugh Sciannameo, PSO Vice President of Public Affairs declined to acknowledge requests for details about the new agreement.

So even though both sides were anxious to sell their respective talking points to supporters throughout the course of the dispute, neither seems inclined to share the details of the subsequent agreement with those same individuals. We’ll have to wait until one or both parties have a change of heart or the agreement is made available before we discover the actual terms.

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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