Minnesota Chorale shares lessons learned during orchestra lockout

Posted on: February 27, 2014

In a Wednesday (2/26) post at the Chorus America website, Kelsey Menehan writes that the sixteen-month lockout at the Minnesota Orchestra “had an immediate and profound impact” on the Minnesota Chorale, the Minnesota Orchestra’s principal chorus. “Bob Peskin, the Chorale’s executive director, says the lockout prompted an existential crisis.… ‘We had to ask, “Who are we? What does this mean for our organization?” ’ … In the spring of 2013, Kathy Saltzman Romey, the Chorale’s artistic director, sat down with a group of singers and came up with an alternate program for every upcoming concert date…. For the first concert of the season”—Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony—“Romey [and] her choral colleagues … the Kantorei, the National Lutheran Choir, the Oratorio Society of Minnesota, The Singers, and VocalEssence … donated their services and Central Lutheran Church in Minneapolis offered the space for free…. ‘We can never again take for granted this ready source of work and income,’ says Peskin…. We are called the Minnesota Chorale…. If we have a state-wide mission, then we want to [also] be performing with the Mankato Symphony and the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra.’ The bonds forged with Twin Cities-area choral groups also will endure, Peskin says.”

Posted February 27, 2014