Why The “If You Aren’t Playing, We Aren’t Paying” Rationale Just Doesn’t Work

As coronavirus shutdowns continue, we’re seeing some genuinely positive interaction between employers and musician employees working toward mutually agreeable solutions to the sensitive issue of payroll. Outside of those scenarios, I’m seeing one of the most derogatory old-school stereotypes emerge as justification for cancelling musician pay entirely: musicians only work 20 hours per week. This twisted notion assumes that musicians are only paid for the time they are on stage rehearsing …

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Why Yes, Ben Folds Is All Kinds Of Cool

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We’ve taken a look at singer/songwriter Ben Folds’ work within the live orchestra field a few times over the years and his recent work with the National Symphony Orchestra (NSO) was the focus of a Fox News Power Player segment on 2/16/2020. Folds, who serves as an Artistic Advisor at the NSO, has always been an engaging advocate for live music and the segment does a fantastic job at capturing his …

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Top-Tier Musician Compensation 2019

It’s time to revisit base musician compensation levels at the top eight highest paying orchestras. For a number of these orchestras, the 2018/19 season marks the end of their existing collective bargaining agreement (CBA). In each of those instances, the outcomes will have a large impact on what many orchestra musicians consider their organization’s ability to compete for the best on-stage talent. We’ve been tracking these values since the 2009/10 season …

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Top-Tier Musician Compensation 2018

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It’s time to revisit base musician compensation levels at the top eight highest paying orchestras. For a number of these orchestras, the 2017/18 season marks the end of their existing collective bargaining agreement (CBA) and they have yet to ratify a new contract. In each of those instances, the outcomes will have a large impact on what many orchestra musicians consider their organization’s ability to compete for the best on-stage talent. …

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Negotiation Update 2016

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Most professional orchestra collective bargaining agreements expire during the summer months and since the economic downturn, it is increasingly common to see groups continue negotiating past the current agreement’s expiration date. A decade ago, that used be cause for alarm but in today’s environment, it is practically standard operating procedure assuming groups don’t manage to wrap things up months in advance. Last season witnessed nearly a dozen middle to large budget …

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