Kentucky Opera, Louisville Orchestra musicians clash over “Figaro”

Posted on: October 12, 2011

In Wednesday’s (10/12) Courier-Journal (Louisville, Kentucky), Larry Muhammad writes, “The musicians’ contract standoff with Louisville Orchestra is spilling over into performances with the Kentucky Opera. Kentucky Opera officials worked with the Local 11-637 and the Louisville Orchestra Musicians Association to play at the performance of ‘Carmen.’ But they say they can’t make the same arrangement for the coming performance of ‘The Marriage of Figaro.’ David Roth, Kentucky Opera’s general director, said in a press release Tuesday that the ‘Carmen’ agreement reached with the musicians ‘was not affordable’ and couldn’t be repeated for ‘The Marriage of Figaro.’ Roth warned that the Kentucky Opera would pursue ‘other options to provide music for “The Marriage of Figaro” unless the musicians agreed to its offer to perform at a lower rate. Tuesday’s press release said the Opera paid the musicians association and the union $91,895 for ‘Carmen’, when it would have cost them $58,340 under their normal arrangement with Louisville Orchestra. Musicians Association official Kim Tichenor accused Roth acting in bad faith and failing to present an alternative proposal. … The absence of a [Louisville Orchestra] contract led the Opera to work with the union and the musicians association to forge the ‘Carmen’ agreement.”

Posted October 12, 2011