Charleston Symphony musicians play without pay

Posted on: March 16, 2009

“Players of the Charleston Symphony Orchestra did not get full pay on Friday,” writes Adam Parker in Monday’s (3/16) Post and Courier (Charleston, South Carolina). “ ‘Short paychecks’ and four weeks of unpaid furlough, to be taken before the season ends June 30, are part of a short-term deal worked out by musicians and management, according to symphony board president Ted Legasey. Non-musician staff also have agreed to a commensurate cut in annual wages, Legasey said. … The arrangement was the result of ‘a good team effort,’ he said, acknowledging the burden it places on musicians and staff. … Curt Long, executive director of the Alabama Symphony, was invited by Charleston musicians recently to evaluate the financial health of the CSO. He recommended increased cooperation and a shift in focus from personnel cuts to general budget cuts, according to Legasey. The reports included recommendations to strengthen fundraising operations and marketing programs, which the board has committed to do.” In addition to pay cuts, the musicians agreed to defer reimbursement of payroll shortfalls until December.
Posted March 16, 2009