New musicians contract at Lyric Opera of Chicago

Posted on: December 7, 2009

In Saturday’s (12/5) Chicago Tribune, John von Rhein reports, “The Lyric Opera orchestra ratified a new multiyear contract late Friday afternoon, narrowly averting a strike the musicians union had called for the opening of ‘The Merry Widow’ on Saturday night. The new contract covers three seasons beginning in 2009-10 and ending in 2011-12. It guarantees the 76 orchestra members 26 weeks of employment in the first year, with a reduction to 24 weeks in the second and third years. The weekly wage is frozen at current levels for the first year, with a 4 percent increase in the second and third years. However, because of the two-week reduction for the second and third years, orchestra salaries will be essentially frozen. According to the most recent Lyric figures, the average orchestra wage was $91,624 for 27 weeks of work and 20 hours of work per week, not including overtime.”

Posted December 7, 2009