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Toledo Symphony musicians approve compensation reductions

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Members of the Toledo Symphony in the Spring for Music festival at Carnegie Hall in New York, May, 2011.

SPECIAL TO BLADE/Craig Ruttle Enlarge

Musicians in the Toledo Symphony have approved a contract that calls for compensation reductions ranging from 5 to 20 percent.

The musicians, who are members of the Toledo Federation of Musicians Local 15-286, voted to approve the 2013-14 contract last week. The vote totals were not made available.

The minimum annual salary of the 50 core orchestra musicians was reduced to $23,703. In addition, employer contributions to the 403(b) plan for musicians will be reduced to 1 percent.

"This was a very difficult negotiation resulting in financial concessions that take the musicians back more than a decade," said Georg Klaas, who plays clarinet and is chairman of the Toledo Symphony Orchestra Committee.

The concert schedule for the 2013-14 season, which opened Friday, will remain unchanged.

“The Board of the Toledo Symphony is very pleased that the parties were able to reach an agreement in this challenging economic environment,” said Symphony Board Chairman Dick Anderson.

“Our admiration for the TSO musicians has grown immensely during the negotiation process,” Kathleen Carroll, TSO President and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

“In spite of the concessionary nature of our talks, evident always was musician regard for the quality of their performances, coupled with abiding desire to continue to deliver high levels of community service,” she added.

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