Fort Worth Symphony Cancels Concerts Through December; Refuses Overtures for Collaboration
Despite a return to the negotiation table on Saturday, Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra (FWSO) Management has announced today that it is unilaterally canceling concerts through December 31, 2016. This comes after rebuffing Musicians’ repeated offers to collaborate with Management to develop financial solutions to resolve the nearly seven week long dispute.
Musicians, represented by Local 72-147 of the American Federation of Musicians, in off-the-record discussions have proposed that Management halt its damaging cancellations and both parties combine their time, talent and resources to develop new projects and sources of revenue within the Fort Worth community. "We have been telling Management that we will work with them to actively find financial solutions, but Management is not listening," said Ed Jones, FWSO Principal Tuba and member of the Negotiating Committee.
Collaboration was the hallmark of the Musicians’ history with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. Before a pattern of continuous cuts began in 2010, this spirit of working together resulted in creating new revenue, which helped to lay the groundwork for community events like the highly profitable Concerts in the Garden series. This once positive relationship was central to the development of the orchestra’s now threatened world class status. However, today Management refuses to consider collaborative solutions.
Management’s only answer is to cancel two more months of concerts, refusing to negotiate anything but continued cuts – cuts which damage the Association’s very strength and ability to meet its future challenges. The cancellations include a set of Symphonic Subscription concerts featuring Pianist Vadym Kholodenko, as well as the completion of a critically acclaimed recording project with this favorite Fort Worth artist. The following events have also been cancelled:
- Pops performances celebrating America’s music and history
- the hugely popular Holiday Pops the weekend after Thanksgiving
- other multiple holiday performances across the city
- a special performance with Trumpet Soloist Chris Botti
- and several concerts bringing music to children in schools across Fort Worth.
By canceling so many performances months before they are scheduled, Management has ensured that there will be no more music from the FWSO in 2016. This virtual lockout of the musicians is senselessly denying the people of Fort Worth of their hometown orchestra, turning the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra into a Management – without Music.