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Fate of Detroit Symphony's 2011-12 season still unknown

The DSO's upcoming season is still up in the air
Jennifer Guerra
Michigan Radio
The DSO's upcoming season is still up in the air

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra musicians strike is now in its 26th week and the remainder of the season has been canceled.

The New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, and many other orchestras around the country have announced their 2011-12 orchestra season, and tickets are already on sale.

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra has not been able to announce its upcoming season because of the current musicians' strike.

Mark Clague says that’s too bad because season subscriptions are an orchestra’s bread and butter.

Clague teaches musicology at the University of Michigan. He says DSO season ticket holders have found new ways to spend their entertainment dollars since the strike began:

"They’ve developed new relationships and new habits. The real question is: Will they go back to the way things were even when the orchestra settles?

Cornelia Pokryzwa has been a DSO season ticket holder for years. She says she will "absolutely" continue to buy season tickets if the strike ends equitably, but she won't support what she calls a '"diminished" DSO:

"If [management] cannot settle with these musicians, and come to terms that are fair and agreeable, I would never step foot in Orchestra Hall again."

The players offered to return to work earlier this month if management agreed to binding arbitration. So far, that hasn’t happened.

A DSO board meeting is schedule for Wednesday, March 30th.

Jennifer is a reporter for Michigan Radio's State of Opportunity project, which looks at kids from low-income families and what it takes to get them ahead. She previously covered arts and culture for the station, and was one of the lead reporters on the award-winning education series Rebuilding Detroit Schools. Prior to working at Michigan Radio, Jennifer lived in New York where she was a producer at WFUV, an NPR station in the Bronx.
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