At the beginning of October, musicians of the Houston Symphony Orchestra (HSO) ratified a three-year contract that runs from October 7, 2018, through October 3, 2021. HSO musicians are represented by Local 65-699 (Houston, TX). HSO is a 52-week orchestra with an annual operating budget of $33.9 million.
After holding salary at $97,240 for the 2018-2019 season, musicians will receive raises of 4% and 4.1% in the following two seasons, respectively—bringing compensation to $105,300 by the 2020-2021 season. Seniority pay will also increase under the new contract.
Orchestra size remains at 84 musicians, but the bargaining unit will increase to 85 in the 2020-2021 season, when the orchestra librarian will be added to the CBA. Also new under this agreement, parents will be able to take an additional two weeks of sick leave in the first six months following the birth or adoption of their child.
“We were able to achieve an agreement that propels the HSO forward to become one of the leading orchestras of the AFM,” says Local 65-699 President Lovie Smith-Wright.