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Both orchestras schedule labor negotiations with locked out musicians

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Both the Minnesota Orchestra and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra have scheduled negotiating sessions with locked-out musicians next week, in hopes of resolving their labor disputes.

MPR reports talks on each side of the river are set for Jan. 2.

Earlier this month, the SPCO called off all concerts through Feb. 8. Management said it faced a deficit of nearly $900,000 for the fiscal year that ended June 30 and has proposed a contract that cuts musician salaries by tens of thousands of dollars and reduces the size of the orchestra.

In Minneapolis, Minnesota Orchestra musicians are also mired in a labor contract dispute. Last week, management urged musicians to resume talks, but canceled or rescheduled all of its concerts through Feb. 10. Management has proposed cutting minimum salaries by 32 percent.

Meanwhile, musicians from both orchestras have played shows independently, including a sold-out concert at a Wayzata church earlier this month and a concert at the Minneapolis Convention Center on Oct. 18.

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