Boston Symphony and principal flutist settle equal-pay lawsuit

Posted on: February 15, 2019

“Elizabeth Rowe, the principal flutist who sued the Boston Symphony Orchestra in a groundbreaking equal-pay lawsuit last year, has agreed to settle her case with the orchestra, according to documents filed in Suffolk County Superior Court Thursday,” writes Malcolm Gay in Thursday’s (2/14) Boston Globe. The court documents stated that the details of the resolution are confidential. “The case … has been closely watched…. Rowe, one of the first women to sue under [Massachusetts’] new Equal Pay Law last July, alleged in the lawsuit that the BSO had discriminated against her ‘on the basis of gender by paying her an amount less than other comparable males.’ The suit [alleged] that in 2017 she made roughly three-quarters the salary of her male colleague [principal oboist John Ferrillo] for ‘comparable work.’ … Attorneys for the BSO … argued that symphonies around the country set different pay scales for the oboe and flute.” A joint statement from Rowe and the BSO read, in part, “The Boston Symphony continues to strive to be an industry leader in furthering the role of women at every level of the organization…. The orchestra will continue to collaborate with musicians, staff, and other leaders in the field to accelerate the process of achieving gender parity.”

Posted February 15, 2019

Photo of Elizabeth Rowe by Marco Borggreve