Musicians reject Philadelphia Orchestra’s proposed strategic plan

Posted on: August 17, 2011

In Wednesday’s (8/17) Philadelphia Inquirer, Peter Dobrin reports, “In a stunning rebuke to the official leadership of the Philadelphia Orchestra, musicians have rejected a strategic plan prepared by president Allison B. Vulgamore and management leaders. Players ‘formally reject its recommendations,’ states a letter to Vulgamore and Philadelphia Orchestra Association board chairman Richard B. Worley. ‘The document and its suggestions have serious flaws, and we do not believe it will do what a strategic plan is supposed to do: create a plan for the future that protects the music we create and builds on our legacy as one of the world’s greatest orchestras.’ The letter, which comes on the eve of the orchestra’s departure for a three-week European tour, is to be presented to the board Wednesday, and was signed by about 80 of the orchestra’s 100 or so members, said players committee chairman John Koen. … the message was delivered on ‘Philadelphia Orchestra Musicians’ letterhead. … The May 19 strategic plan detailed troubling trends in ticket sales and philanthropy, and outlined ideas to re-engage audiences and donors. … Although the language was vague, the plan proposed expanding the orchestra’s repertoire into more populist realms, and suggested repackaging ideas such as dressing the musicians in more informal attire and holding social events in connection with concerts.”

Posted August 17, 2011