Tim Smith Couldn’t Be More Right

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Veteran music critic and cultural reporter Tim Smith published an article at his personal blog on 7/29/2019 that examined the conspicuous silence from Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO) music director Marin Alsop when it comes to the summer season squashing, gala gouging lockout. I think there’s one person who can cause a major shift in the BSO’s fate, the one person who stands to lose a heckuva lot (not just a hefty …

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Is There A Way To “Win” Baltimore’s Labor Dispute?

Out of the gate, it’s fair to mention that in a labor dispute as contentious as the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s (BSO), there are no “winners,” only shades of loss. Events this week have demonstrated the executive leadership appear to be dug in for the long haul and the musicians have responded in kind. If nothing else, the post economic downturn era has provided some clear patterns on how things may develop. …

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Substitute Parity At ICSOM Orchestras 2019

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In 2014, we took a deep dive into which International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians (ICSOM) symphonic orchestras paid substitute musicians the same rate as core musicians and in the wake of a recent conversation with ICSOM chairperson Meredith Snow and ICSOM President Paul Austin, it’s time to update that list. My thanks to Paul Austin for spearheading this effort and providing ICSOM’s list of changes. As with most comparative …

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Shop Talk: S01E01 Poke It With A Stick

Surprise! Today marks the inaugural episode of a new video podcast series where I sit down with movers and shakers in the field and talk shop. Today’s episode focuses on a topic near and dear to my own arts admin heart: substitute musician equal pay for equal work. I’m joined by a pair of leaders from the musician side of the equation, International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians (ICSOM) chairperson …

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Commentary: A Question Of Just Cause For Discipline Or Discharge In Minnesota

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On Saturday, 12/2/17 the Minnesota Orchestra presented a concert featuring a guest artist known for writing music inspired by politics, his passion for opera, love, and family relationships. During the second half of the performance, the artist addressed the audience expressing concern over the recently passed GOP tax plan. Before his address to the audience was complete, the orchestra’s principal trumpet decided it offended his political sensibilities to such a degree …

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