There Are No Toxic Avengers

The 3/15/2021 edition of the New York Times published an article by Julia Jacobs that reports on the beleaguered Metropolitan Opera’s efforts to wage labor war on multiple fronts. Spoiler: it’s no better than where it was a few months ago. Having said that, there was one piece of news that should draw attention. Over the past year, 10 of the orchestra’s 97 members have retired. At just a hair over …

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The Latest In The Met’s Labor Problems

Just a quick pointer today to Norm Lebrechet’s Slippedisc where he published a letter from Metropolitan Opera General Manager Peter Gelb to the union orchestra musicians. Along with Gelb’s letter is a reply from the Local union president Adam Krauthammer. We’ll examine both early next week.

Gelb’s Puzzling Threshold For “Best Relationships”

The Associated Press published an article on 1/28/2021 by Ronald Blum that examines The Metropolitan Opera’s finances. Nutshell: they saw the same drop in earned income other groups are experiencing but offset that in part by increased unearned income. In and of itself, there’s nothing remarkable there but what should catch your eye is the spin Met general manager Peter Gelb put on that story. “The good news is that we’ve managed …

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The Latest Waypoint In The Met’s Ugly Labor War

The Met is seeing a surge in negative feedback across their social media channels in response to the executive leadership’s decision to weaponize the negotiation process. By that, we mean it decided to cut off artist and technical employees from all current wages and insurance unless they agree to sizable long-term concessions. In an attempt to bolster good will and maintain audience engagement, the Met decided to release archived recordings from …

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That Odor You Smell Is Disaster Blowing In The Wind

As a board member, it’s difficult to get an independent assessment of the institution and its strategic direction during periods of labor distress. There’s a natural inclination to look inward and draw strength from colleagues while not letting too many outside voices become a distraction. Having said that, you know things might be getting out of hand when a marquee level voice starts questioning your strategic wisdom. Case in point, Riccardo …

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