Flutist Sues-Equal Pay

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lennygoran
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Flutist Sues-Equal Pay

Post by lennygoran » Sat Jul 07, 2018 9:04 pm


maestrob
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Re: Flutist Sues-Equal Pay

Post by maestrob » Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:40 am

The history of lawsuits by members of major ensembles is not good, unfortunately. As one example, Lucine Amara famously sued the MET for age discrimination when the company refused to renew her contract. She won the lawsuit, but it ended her career as she became persona non grata industry-wide.

Good luck to her. She's very brave.

Heck148
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Re: Flutist Sues-Equal Pay

Post by Heck148 » Sun Jul 08, 2018 11:02 am

I'm not sure how far this one will go - usually, principal pay is negotiable for the major orchestras...Union contracts stipulate a minimum pay rate for all positions, but traditionally, principal chairs will be at the principal rate, plus the negotiated amount...it is somewhat like the salaries of major sports figures, they aren't all equal by any means...Ms. Rowe may think she should be getting equal pay to the male principal oboe, whatever, but she may be getting paid more than some other male principal...not sure where the discrimination comes in...

John F
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Re: Flutist Sues-Equal Pay

Post by John F » Sun Jul 08, 2018 12:51 pm

The flute and oboe are not exactly equivalent where the amount of skilled labor is involved, as Heck knows. An oboist has to make a crucial part of his instrument, the reed, every time he plays it, and this has a major effect on his sound. Not so the flute, as far as I know. Also, the oboe is part of the standard orchestra for music before about 1790, while the flute is sometimes included, sometimes not. This may not make much of a difference since Baroque music is so seldom played by symphony orchestras these days. Of course this is splitting hairs, or reeds.
John Francis

barney
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Re: Flutist Sues-Equal Pay

Post by barney » Sun Jul 08, 2018 5:48 pm

Perhaps orchestral musicians should be played on a per-note basis. Might be tough on 3rd trumpet or piccolo, but a rate of say 2 cents per note played would see violinists quite well off.

Belle
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Re: Flutist Sues-Equal Pay

Post by Belle » Sun Jul 08, 2018 9:35 pm

I wouldn't touch this kind of legal/industrial action with a 20 foot pole!! Poisoned chalice going forward. I wonder if the man who is getting more has had more experience altogether? The situation with pay is seldom a simple matter of 'you're getting more'.

I remember when I was teaching how many of my fellow female staff members had the day off or left at lunch time, or earlier, because of sick kids. Often they'd arrive late because they had a parent/teacher interview for their kids or when they had doctors' appointments. This almost never happened with male teachers, in my experience.

Rates of pay is a complex matter. It constantly bugged me when I was teaching how I was paid the same amount as the 'home economics' teacher who taught kids how to bake biscuits - especially when I had to mark endless essays and bone up at university to teach advanced kids in Extension courses. But that's unionism for you.

John F
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Re: Flutist Sues-Equal Pay

Post by John F » Mon Jul 09, 2018 12:06 am

Different kinds of experience with different repertoire. Before coming to the Boston Symphony, John Ferrillo was a principal oboe in the Metropolitan Opera's orchestra (they have 2 principals for each instrument). Elizabeth Rowe's previous experience has all been in symphony orchestras, most recently the National Symphony in Washington. He has a couple of years' seniority but both have been in the BSO so long that the difference is trivial; after all, she came to the BSO knowing the standard concert repertoire while he didn't.
John Francis

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