The Pandemic’s Impact On Us Vs. Them Syndrome

There’s a fascinating article in the 10/26/21 edition of the Pittsburgh-Gazette by Jeremy Reynolds that examines the impact vaccination mandates are having on Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO) musicians. Like many nonprofit performing arts organizations, the PSO adopted vaccination requirements for all artist employees and Reynolds’ article dives into some of the resulting conflict among some musicians refusing to be vaccinated. The article does an excellent job at making clear the requirement …

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It Isn’t Often You See This Much Potential For Artistic Change

The 8/3/2021 edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published an article by Jeremy Reynolds that takes a deeper than normal look at the 13 openings at the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO). 13 simultaneous openings at an orchestra of this budget size that isn’t emerging from a major labor dispute and/or financial implosion is highly unusual. What’s more, five of those are principal level positions and one fixed seat position. 1st violins, three …

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Your Tour Has Daddy Issues


The 12/16/2019 edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published an article written by Jeremy Reynolds that takes a hard look at the pros and cons of international touring. As a conduit for discussion, the article uses recent Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO) excursions. Regular readers know this was a popular topic in the blog’s early years and while I haven’t written about it in a while, my perspective remains mostly unchanged. In a …

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Measuring Artistic Quality In The Wake Of Contentious Labor Disputes

The 7/13/2019 edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published an article by Jeremy Reynolds that examines what I consider to be one of the most pressing topics of our time. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it also happens to be one of the rare third rail topics shared by executive leadership and musicians: measuring artistic quality in the wake of contentious labor disputes that end in concessions. Here’s how those situations unfold: Employer proposes dramatic …

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Negotiating Yourself Into A Corner

Adaptistration People 100

The recent Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) strike is an excellent example of something that demonstrates how much the work stoppage PR landscape has shifted over the past decade. For example, one of the strongest musician talking points is the deleterious impact concessions have on an orchestra’s ability to attract and retain the very best artistic talent. This was a cornerstone of the CSO musician position: If the employer does away with …

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