The Minnesota Orchestral Association has invited the Musicians' Union to negotiate a new contract once again.
The MOA has put out two possible dates - Saturday January 5 or Wednesday January 9. The invitation to negotiate has been made "without any preconditions."
The Minnesota Orchestra has also cancelled or rescheduled all concert performances through Sunday, February 10. Ticket holders will be contacted directly by the Orchestra to outline their options, including exchanging their tickets, or receiving a refund.
Earlier this month the Minnesota Orchestra disclosed that it has a $6 million deficit for its fiscal year ending Aug. 31. The Minnesota Orchestra musicians have been locked out since the beginning of October.
Is it time for the MN Orchestra and SPCO to merge?
As others who are more knowledgeable about music will tell you, they are totally different types of orchestras (full symphony orchestra vs. chamber orchestra), so a merger is nothing to be wished or hoped for.
Seriously, we are talking about fewer than 150 professional musicians here -- if the Twin Cities cannot support both orchestras, we are really in poor shape (and I don't mean financially).
"Without any preconditions" - does this include the musician's request for independent financial analysis? Because that seems like a common-sense condition for ensuring information symmetry and fair negotiations.
I live in Cologne, Germany, which has a population and tax base similar to Minneapolis. The city supports not one but 3 full-time professional orchestras, with a total membership of around 300 musicians. It seems to me a terrible shame that Minneapolis, with its well-educated public and beautifully sounding concert hall, cannot find a way to maintain its world-class ensembles.