Fort Wayne Phil, Musicians Hammer Out Short-Term Contract
The Fort Wayne Philharmonic agreed on a contract with musicians Sunday, bringing professional orchestral music back to the area in time for summer. Their first performance back will be the Patriotic Pops concert at Parkview Field on June 26.
The new master agreement is set to expire in August of 2022 and provides 35 weeks of work over 12 months at 2019 wage rates. It also offers part-time and full-time contract musicians furlough offset payments. It also maintains the number of core and per service musicians. The number of contract musicians had been a sticking point during negotiations.
Campbell MacDonald spokesperson for the Philharmonic Players Association said the support from the community was a major step in getting to this agreement.
"The support we've gotten from the community the last year is gonna be meaningful for us when we negotiate again in a year," MacDonald said.
Philharmonic Board Chair Chuck Surak said in a release he is grateful to the negotiating teams and looking forward to Philharmonic music returning this summer.
The settlement also includes an increase in maternity leave, payment to musicians for participation in audition committees, and employer-covered consultations with a hearing protection specialist.
Negotiations have been ongoing since 2019 and musicians have been furloughed since August of 2020.