Musician strike may silence Seattle Symphony, Operaon October 16, 2012 @ 12:17 pm (Updated: 2:36 pm - 10/16/12 )
The Seattle Symphony and Opera Players' Organization says the musicians authorized the strike after management of both organizations proposed a 15 percent cut in pay in their last contract offer, the union says in a statement.
"The Seattle Symphony is one of the highest earned income-producing orchestras in the country and is forecasted to again have a balanced budget in the 2012-13 season," said cellist David Sabee. "We are proud of the contribution our past concessions have made toward balancing the budget, and see no reason that continued pay cuts should be necessary."
The union says local musicians have made a number of concessions since 2005, giving back more than $9.6 million to the symphony.
"The musicians have always been invested in the success of the Symphony and Opera, lending a hand in times of financial difficulty," added Sabee. "We are entering a new era at the Seattle Symphony and need to develop a compensation package reflective of this new period in order to uphold the artistic integrity of the Symphony and attract and retain the highest quality musicians."
The Seattle Symphony faces an $11 million debt from past season, while the Seattle Opera announced in June that it had a $1 million shortfall in its $21.4 million annual budget for its 2010-2011 season, The Seattle Times reports.
Union members planned to meet Tuesday to discuss next steps.
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