Readers who have been following the contract talks between the Minnesota Orchestra board and its musicians' union have wondered what the music director, Osmo Vanska, thinks about all this. To be clear, a music director is in a very difficult situation when management and union bargain a deal. He is responsible for the artistic quality of the ensemble -- in which he works closely with the musicians. And he is one of the top two administrative leaders of the organization.
Therefore, it was newsworthy that Vanska wrote a statement that was read at Sunday's free concert, played by musicians at Lake Harriet in Minneapolis.
Here's the text:
"When I arrived in Minneapolis in 2003, I set many lofty goals for the Minnesota Orchestra. I knew that with hard work and dedication to our art, we would be able to achieve [the goals] and take our place among the greatest orchestras in the world. Our musicians have met every challenge I set out for them, and I could not be prouder of what we have achieved. And I also believe that, if we stay focused on our mission of bringing great music and great musicians to Minnesota and the world, we can have even greater days ahead of us."
The two sides have a meeting scheduled for Monday. The contract expires Sept. 30.