Progress in Hartford Symphony contract talks

Posted on: November 20, 2015

“The Hartford Symphony Orchestra has reached a settlement with U.S. labor officials, in which it agreed to issue contracts to musicians for the current year,” states a staff-written article in Friday’s (11/20) Hartford Courant (CT). “The contracts … are at the heart of a standoff between the union and the symphony management. The symphony, in order to shrink its operating deficit, is seeking to cut the number of performances and rehearsals guaranteed for the core musicians.… The symphony management did not issue contracts, including guaranteed dates for the 2015-16 season, to individual musicians by May 1—the deadline set by the overall contract with Local 400 of the American Federation of Musicians. The union, part of the AFL-CIO, filed an unfair labor practice complaint. The National Labor Relations Board sided with the union, and reached the settlement that the union announced late Thursday…. ‘It provides a starting point’ for an ultimate agreement,” said Michael Pollard, a violinist and spokesman for the musicians. “A spokesman for the symphony, which is managed by The Bushnell Performing Arts Center, could not be reached Thursday evening. The symphony’s season is in full swing, unabated by the dispute, as the musicians have not publicly threatened to walk out and management has not publicly threatened a lockout.”

Posted November 20, 2015