Baltimore Symphony musicians and management unable to reach agreement; musicians locked out as of June 17

Posted on: June 17, 2019

“Baltimore Symphony Orchestra musicians will be locked out of the band’s facilities at the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall starting Monday as management continues to negotiate salaries,” writes Phil Davis in Sunday’s (6/16) Baltimore Sun. “The orchestra’s board of directors approved the move Sunday evening, the group wrote in a news release, saying the board could not reach an agreement with Local 40-543, the union that represents the orchestra’s musicians. ‘Due to the Baltimore Symphony’s urgent need to address longstanding financial issues and change its business model, the BSO has made this extremely difficult decision,’ CEO Peter Kjome wrote…. Brian Prechtl, a percussionist in the orchestra [and co-chairman of the Baltimore Symphony Musicians’ Players Committee], said musicians are being asked to bear a financial burden created by upper management…. The orchestra abruptly canceled its summer concerts on May 30, citing a loss of revenue.… Management has proposed cutting musicians’ pay and vacation time as well as reducing its season from 52 weeks to 40 … Financial documents show that the orchestra would end its fiscal year with a $1.5 million deficit…. Legislators have also called upon Gov. Larry Hogan to release $1.6 million in funding set aside for the orchestra. The governor said last week he would most likely not release the funding.”

Posted June 17, 2019

In photo: Music Director Marin Alsop conducts the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Photo by Gabriella Demczuk