Monday, September 30, 2013


Nothing but bad news today:
  • New York City won't help NYCO stay afloat; neither will private philanthropist Michael Bloomberg (or, apparently, anyone else with $7 million to spare).
  • Elsewhere, it's reported that the company raised about $2 million of that $7 million.
  • The Minnesota Orchestra Association's most recent offer, publicized by the MAO despite an agreed-upon media blackout, was still horrifyingly short of what the musicians made before the lockout and was duly rejected by the musicians. There was a $20,000 "signing bonus" in the offer, which would not come close, over time, to matching the size of the cuts the MOA was asking for.
  • Thus, the orchestra is withdrawing from the planned Carnegie Hall concerts. I can't imagine Osmo Vänskä staying under these circumstances, but no announcement has been made yet.
Both NYCO and the MOA lost a year of concerts, and income, with critical impact on their budgeting. The MOA, of course, has locked out its musicians for a year. I expect NYCO to proceed with its bankruptcy filing and the MOA to collapse more slowly: it still has an endowment left. As Alex Ross says, the boards of directors of these two organizations deserve careful scrutiny for their roles in these catastrophes.

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