Musicians ask Minnesota Orchestra for financial information

  • Article by: GRAYDON ROYCE , Star Tribune
  • Updated: September 4, 2013 - 8:33 PM

Request includes details about Orchestra Hall renovation and budget forecasts.

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Locked out musicians from the Minnesota Orchestra, led by conductor Osmo Vanska, center, played a concert at the Minneapolis Convention Center in February.

Photo: Joles, David, Star Tribune

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Musicians of the Minnesota Orchestra on Thursday asked management to release updated financial reports, budgets and forecasts.

Specifically, musicians seek a cost summary of the renovation of Orchestra Hall, the 2013 budget, financial and contribution reports, the projected 2014 budget and fundraising plans, as well as the season schedule.

Gwen Pappas, the orchestra’s spokeswoman, said management would be “happy to appropriately respond to this request, as we have with all others.”

Pappas said the board will announce fiscal 2013 financials “as soon as we are accurately able to do so. The fiscal year ended four days ago, and we are preparing for our annual independent audit.”

“We’d like to know what the current finances are,” said Blois Olson, the musicians’ spokesman.

The board of directors on Wednesday issued a financial analysis that it commissioned from Anthony Knerr & Associates. It concluded that the orchestra has incurred structural deficits and faces significant challenges going forward.

Musicians discounted the analysis and said it was based only on interviews and data provided by managers and did not include forward-looking budgets.

In an interview, Olson said the musicians do not accept the board’s premise that the root of the long-standing contract dispute is a financial crisis.

“We’ve never had all the data updated at the same time and they never give us anything forward-looking,” Olson said.

Graydon Royce • 612-673-7299

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