Now is the right time to become an American Federation of Musicians member. From ragtime to rap, from the early phonograph to today's digital recordings, the AFM has been there for its members. And now there are more benefits available to AFM members than ever before, including a multi-million dollar pension fund, excellent contract protection, instrument and travelers insurance, work referral programs and access to licensed booking agents to keep you working.

As an AFM member, you are part of a membership of more than 80,000 musicians. Experience has proven that collective activity on behalf of individuals with similar interests is the most effective way to achieve a goal. The AFM can negotiate agreements and administer contracts, procure valuable benefits and achieve legislative goals. A single musician has no such power.

The AFM has a proud history of managing change rather than being victimized by it. We find strength in adversity, and when the going gets tough, we get creative - all on your behalf.

Like the industry, the AFM is also changing and evolving, and its policies and programs will move in new directions dictated by its members. As a member, you will determine these directions through your interest and involvement. Your membership card will be your key to participation in governing your union, keeping it responsive to your needs and enabling it to serve you better. To become a member now, visit www.afm.org/join.

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE AFM



Home » Articles » Lyric Opera of Chicago Resolves Orchestra Strike
Print This Post Print This Post

Lyric Opera of Chicago Resolves Orchestra Strike

  -  

Days after a musicians strike began, musicians and management of the Lyric Opera of Chicago reached a contract agreement October 14. The new collective bargaining agreement extends through the 2020-2021 season. It includes a reduction in the number of main opera season weeks from 24 to 22, as well as a reduction in the number of musicians. The orchestra complement will be reduced by four musicians from 74 to 70; however, the reduction will be delayed until the 2019-2020 season.

Under the new agreement, musicians will see a 5.6% increase in weekly salary over the three-year contract term. In addition, the 2019-2020 season includes a guarantee of five additional weeks for The Ring Cycle, outside of the 22-week main opera season. The spring musical is guaranteed to employ 37 Lyric Orchestra members, with weekly salary for musicals increasing by 6.7% over the three-year contract term. There are new guarantees regarding the hiring of Lyric Orchestra musicians for Joffrey Ballet productions beginning in 2020.

Health care benefits will remain intact; family leave was equalized at eight paid weeks for maternity and paternity leave.

The previous musicians’ contract expired June 30. When management failed to offer a fair deal, Lyric musicians—members of Local 10-208 (Chicago, IL)—went on strike October 9, leading to the cancellation of two rehearsals and three performances. One of the rehearsals was restored and two of the performances have been rescheduled. The negotiating team bargained a long road back from management’s initial proposal of a 43% wage cut. Management’s previous offers had also proposed eliminating five orchestra positions, requiring higher health care payments, and eliminating all of Lyric’s popular radio broadcasts.

“The Chicago Lyric Opera Orchestra is dedicated to providing Chicago and the world with the highest quality grand opera and is eager to work to find a positive way forward. The outpouring of public sentiment on behalf of the orchestra has inspired the musicians to persist in this ideal,” says Orchestra Committee Chair William Cernota.







NEWS