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STL Symphony To Say Today Whether More Concerts Axed

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Powell Hall (SLSO photo)

By Maria Hickey, KWMU

St. Louis, MO. – No new talks are scheduled between the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra and its musicians, and the orchestra will decide today (Thursday) whether to cancel this weekend's concerts.

A work stoppage began January 3 when musicians rejected the symphony's final contract offer.

Chair of the musicians' negotiating committee Jan Gippo says the symphony will not maintain its current quality if salaries are not increased.

"The new very talented people coming out of schools are not going to come to the number sixteenth or number eighteenth orchestra in pay when in fact they have sixteen or eighteen other orchestras to audition for," Gippo said. "They are going to go there first and be hired first."

Symphony President Randy Adams says while the two sides are close in the first part of the contract, the symphony won't be able to meet musicians' demands for raises late in the four-year deal.

Base pay for symphony members is now about $73,000. The symphony's offer would decrease that by $500 at the end of four years.

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