This is not the end, but it doesn’t inspire a lot of hope either:
The musicians of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra have rejected management’s latest contract offer, setting up a showdown that could lead to the cancellation of the rest of the 2010-11 season by the end of the week.
With nearly 50% of the season already lost due to the 19-week musicians’ strike, management has said the conflict has reached a critical juncture. Musicians said that management’s latest offer represented progress, but the two sides remained at odds how to spend $2 million earmarked for community outreach work, and how much of that money would be guaranteed — as opposed to optional for extra work.
Earlier this week, the secretary of the DSO’s executive committee, Glenda Price, said that if a deal wasn’t in place by the end of the week the season would “probably” be canceled.
While management has not characterized the current contract proposal as a final offer, it had asked the musicians for a formal response by Friday. Cellist Haden McKay, a member of the musicians’ negotiating team, confirmed today that the players had rejected the offer — but said that the musicians had made an informal counterproposal and were still interested in finding common ground.
What I hear through the grapevine leads me to believe that DSO management still doesn’t understand the first principle of concessionary bargaining, which is: prioritize. I’m inclined to suspect they don’t get the second principle either, which is: negotiation is about trading.