Louisville Orchestra musicians to reject per-service contract offer

Posted on: July 12, 2011

In Tuesday’s (7/12) Courier-Journal (Louisville, Kentucky), Elizabeth Kramer writes, “The discord between the Louisville Orchestra and its musicians reached new levels Monday as the players said they would unanimously reject a blunt offer from the orchestra’s management to perform on a ‘per-service model’ or risk losing their positions. In a six-page certified letter sent to each musician last week, orchestra CEO Robert Birman outlined a schedule of performances and rehearsals running from September through April and asked the players to indicate which ones they were willing to work. According to the letter, if musicians do not respond by Wednesday, it ‘will be treated as a voluntary refusal to work.’ … But Kim Tichenor, a violinist and the chairwoman of the players’ negotiating committee, said Monday that the musicians would not agree to those terms. … She added that the musicians are still working on an official response to the orchestra’s management. The orchestra filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in December and is working through reorganization plans in federal bankruptcy court. It and the musicians have not had a contract since their previous collective bargaining agreement expired May 31. Although Birman said Monday that the orchestra would continue to negotiate a new contract with the musicians, the proposal in his letter covers the 2011-12 season.”

Posted July 12, 2011