Kalamazoo Symphony musicians file unfair labor practice charge

Posted on: May 23, 2016

“The union representing Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra musicians claims the orchestra didn’t bargain in good faith during recent contract negotiations and blind-sided them with plans to change concert rehearsal schedules,” states an Associated Press article on today’s (5/23) MusicalAmerica.com (subscription required). “The Kalamazoo Federation of Musicians, Local 228 of the American Federation of Musicians, filed an unfair labor practice charge against the orchestra on May 6. It alleges that the orchestra violated federal law when it changed the days and times of rehearsals after a previous collective bargaining agreement had expired and before a new, tentative labor agreement could be completed.… ‘This schedule change throws things on its head,’ Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra cellist and Local 228 Vice President Elizabeth Start said.… One of the main issues in the complaint are orchestra management’s plans to schedule two rehearsal sessions on each of the two days preceding the shows in the orchestra’s symphonic concert series.… Peter Gistelinck, the orchestra’s president and chief executive officer, said … ‘Everything that we are doing is completely in line with the old collective bargaining agreement, in line with the new (tentative) collective bargaining agreement, and in line with the tradition that we have with our other concerts,’ he said.”

Posted May 23, 2016