At a press conference held this morning (October 6) in Detroit’s Orchestra Hall and streamed live over its website, Detroit Symphony Orchestra President and Executive Director Anne Parsons announced that due to missed rehearsals related to the strike of musicians, the orchestra is cancelling its season-opening concerts this weekend. The DSO has stated that subsequent concerts remain scheduled as planned; possible changes to the schedule will be announced next week. In the press conference, Parsons stated, “The DSO needs to confront its financial reality. Board and staff must make decisions based on facts, not hopes. The debts being incurred to pay for today’s programming will have to be paid for by the patrons of tomorrow. And they will pay in both cash and by having much less programming. The facts suggest the only way the DSO can possibly become financially viable is by drastically reducing orchestral costs. Barring such a change, the DSO will probably be forced to close…. I disagree with those who say the changes we’re making will damage the quality of the institution…. I don’t think we know what will happen when change takes place. … Sometimes change comes too late, sometimes not enough, and sometimes too severe, and may contribute to an unsuccessful result. … My belief is that the 85 members who are currently in this orchestra are passionate about this orchestra’s success and future. … I believe it’s the spirit of those participating that determines the outcome. If we decide change will be negative, then it will be negative. If we believe in the alternative, then I believe we can be more successful. A successful DSO will involve a different way of looking at certain things. It will certainly involve a different financial structure, because if the current financial structure follows, we will truly be unsuccessful.” The press conference can be re-viewed here or here. For concert and other breaking updates, visit http://detroitsymphony.com/page.aspx?page_id=706.
Posted October 6, 2010