Orchestra board, musician relations still discordant - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Orchestra board, musician relations still discordant

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LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB) -- Louisville Orchestra musicians lashed out at the orchestra today for refusing to send their dispute to arbitration.  Thursday afternoon, they went before the media to vent their frustrations.

A week ago, they proposed having a mutually agreed upon consultant review the orchestra's operation and make binding recommendations.

Kim Tichenor, the musicians' spokeswoman, said Thursday, "If the board will accept their own recommendation for arbitration and be willing to take a look at the management of the organization, we will come back to work under the terms of the proposed bridge contract -- a contract that many board members have indicated they are in total agreement with."

Orchestra CEO Robert Birman responded, "We, as you know, were willing to go into a binding process.  However, what the players are seeking is a process that would allow an outside consultant to have legal authority over the board of directors, and that's a non-starter."

Birman says the orchestra also doesn't like the musicians' recommendation that calls for them to work under the terms of their old contract for a year, while the consultant is doing his work.

The orchestra says that would cost it an extra $2 million dollars that it doesn't have.

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