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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Chicago Symphony Orchestra Resolves Strike

Musicians, management reach agreement.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
The rest is silence: the empty stage of Orchestra Hall, home of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
Image from Music Acoustics and Architecture © 1962 Leo Baranek.
UPDATED: The Chicago Symphony Orchestra has resolved its labor issues for the moment. A tentative agreement has been announced between the Orchestra Association and the players, meaning that the first part of the 2012 season will go ahead as planned. This includes the orchestra's season-opening concerts at Carnegie Hall under Music Director Riccardo Muti.

Ratification of the contract by all parties was completed on Sept. 25, according to a report in the Chicago Sun-Times. The new contract will apply retroactively from Sept. 17, 2012.

The ensemble will open the season with a performance of Carl Orff's ever-popular cantata Carmina Burana on Oct. 3.

The orchestra's strike resulted in the cancellation of one concert on Sept. 22.  The cancelled concert was the second in a series featuring Music Director Riccardo Muti leading Dvořák's Fifth Symphony, Notturno by Giuseppe Martucci and Ottorino Respighi's orchestral showpiece Feste Romana. Both the season opener on Sept. 20 and a free outdoor performance of Carl Orff's Carmina Burana went ahead as scheduled.

Recent labor troubles have also cropped up in Indianapolis and Atlanta, where orchestra management has locked out musicians as the season approaches.

The CSO's next scheduled concert is Sept. 26. 
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Critical Thinking in the Cheap Seats

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Since 2007, Superconductor has grown from an occasional concert or CD review to a near-daily publication covering classical music, opera and the arts in and around NYC, with excursions to Boston, Philadelphia, and upstate NY. I am a freelance writer living and working in Brooklyn NY. And no, I'm not a conductor.