Symphony musicians, management reach contract agreement
Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra management and musicians have agreed on a new three-year contract which takes effect on Sept. 2, 2013, and extends to Sept. 4, 2016.
The new agreement restores most of the 9.7 percent pay cut from the first two years of the current three-year contract, which began in September 2011 and left compensation for the 2013-14 season undefined.
“I am very pleased that we were able to come to this agreement,” said symphony president James A. Wilkinson. “I really do think the musicians deserve a lot of credit. They pushed for this agreement and have been extremely positive throughout the entire process. Both sides were.”
Musicians will receive a 4 percent increase in base pay for the 2013-14 season to $104,114, the same pay the following season, and a 3 percent increase for the final year of the contract to $107,237.
Base pay is currently $100,111. It was $110,854 for 2010-11. Many musicians earn more than base pay for holding a named or solo chair, for their years of service and for other factors.
“We're very thankful for this settlement, very happy that it moves us forward in the right direction — keeping this orchestra a top-tier, world-class ensemble,” said bass player Micah Howard, chairman of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Committee. “It's a morale booster for us because it indicates this organization wants to stay a destination orchestra for the best musicians.”
Other terms of the new agreement include changes to work rules, increases to other financial terms including retirement benefits, and maintenance of the size of the orchestra at 99 performing musicians plus two librarians.
“We're looking to hire musicians and know we need to be competitive,” Wilkinson said. “We'll be hiring at least two celli, subs and vacancies in horns and violas and probably another violin audition before the end of the year.”
Mark Kanny is classical music critic for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7877 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Symphony off to good start
- Bennett, Gaga: Kids should know more about jazz
- Classical music crisis: Author says schools today aren’t building audiences
- Joe Pye Festival is fun, festive, still growing