6 months into lockout, St. Paul orchestra, management forge tentative deal


Musicians and mangers at the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra have struck a tentative deal aimed at cutting the organization's costs and ending a six-month lockout.

Musician Carole Mason Smith, a lead negotiator, said her committee will recommend musicians accept a proposal floated by SPCO management last week, MPR reported. If musicians vote to accept the deal, annual musician pay would be slashed $15,000 and the orchestra would be cut in size by six players, to 28, MPR reported.

The musicians would get more artistic control over the performances and repertoire.

The move was a reversal from news Monday that the musicians were going to reject the latest offer, which seemed to guarantee the cancellation of the rest of the 2012-13 season.

The musicians' negotiating team told the board of their new intentions even as the board of directors was meeting Tuesday to determine the immediate fate of the orchestra, the Star Tribune reported. Concerts had been canceled through April 21, but the board had hoped to begin concerts again by May 5 if a deal could be reached.

Managers during the dispute had said budget-cutting was needed to erase a $895,080 deficit for the fiscal year that ended June 30, the Pioneer Press noted.

The interim president of the SPCO told MPR that usually by this time of year the orchestra would be selling tickets and subscriptions to the season beginning in the fall. But that season has not even been scheduled.

Late last week, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman had stepped up his effort to broker a resolution of the lockout that dates to last October. Coleman gleefully took to Twitter Tuesday night:

In Minneapolis, Minnesota Orchestra musicians remain locked out in their own contract dispute, and that group's concerts have been canceled through April 27.

Next Up

Cam Talbot / Minnesota Wild

Wild take Game 1 over Vegas in overtime thriller

It was an epic dual between Cam Talbot and Marc-Andre Fluery.

Taylor Rogers

Twins defense, bullpen squanders another rally

This is the story of the 2021 Twins.

Minneapolis police

3 Mpls officers injured on night of shootings, stabbings and fights

It was a tense weekend for the city of Minneapolis.

Fruen Mill in Minneapolis.

Teen in serious condition after fall at abandoned Minneapolis mill

Multiple urban explorers have been hurt at the Fruen Mill.

Screen Shot 2021-04-12 at 5.44.29 PM

Brooklyn Center City Council votes to create department for noncriminal calls

The resolution is named after Daunte Wright and Kobe Dimock-Heisler, who were both killed by police in Brooklyn Center.

Screen Shot 2021-05-16 at 7.54.26 AM

Train derails while passing by lake in Albert Lea

The Union Pacific train derailed Saturday afternoon.

Kaprizov, Wild

5 questions for the Wild's playoff series against Vegas

The Wild seem to have the advantage, but can they win their first playoff series since 2015?

police tape, crime scene

Young girl shot in the head in north Minneapolis

The girl was outside when she was struck by the bullet, police said.

prison, Rush City cell block

Former Army Green Beret and U of M student sentenced for Russian espionage

Peter Rafael Dzibinski Debbins, 46, was sentenced to 188 months in prison.

Miguel Sano

Miguel SanĂ³'s 8th inning blast ends Twins losing streak

The 5-4 victory over the A's snapped a five-game losing streak.


St. Paul Chamber Orchestra doesn't vote on contract, lockout begins

The St. Paul Chamber Orchestra has joined the Minnesota Orchestra in cancelling concerts due to a lockout. SPCO musicians did not vote on a contract offer by Sunday, triggering the lockout. The SPCO's board of directors cancelled concerts through November fourth, leaving both of the Twin Cities' major concert halls dark.

St. Paul Chamber Orchestra unanimously rejects contract offer

Locked out musicians with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra were unanimous in their rejection of a four-year contract offer. Musicians say the pay cuts contained in the offer would reduce salaries by one-third, although management says they amount to only 14 percent. Concerts through this weekend have already been cancelled and more cancellations will follow Wednesday's vote.