【彩神APP争霸是谁的平台app_彩神APP争霸是谁的平台app官网】Chicago Symphony Orchestra musicians on strike, demanding wage increases

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CHICAGO, March 12 (Xinhua) -- A 12-person brass band played Paul Dukas' Fanfare from "La Peri" and John Williams' "The People's House" from the movie "Lincoln" Tuesday morning, not in the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) hall but outside at the gate to the Orchestra hall in downtown Chicago.

The CSO musicians are on strike, and their conductor Maestro Riccardo Muti, one of the preeminent conductors of our day, is with them, pressing sheet music to its stand to prevent wind from blowing it away.

After nearly a year of negotiations, the musicians have failed to reach an agreement with the CSO management on increasing wages and keeping their health care benefits and 150-year-old pension plan.

"We have to make a stand now after years of concessions, after years of agreements where we have not kept up with inflation, let alone our colleague orchestras," said Stephen Lester, a double bass player with CSO and chair of the musicians negotiating committee, in front of a group of media and passers-by.

Muti voiced his support for the CSO musicians. "I am here with my musicians today. We were supposed to have a rehearsal for the next program. As you see, the musicians are here, try to get better situation for the life, their pension, their work."

Muti said he is not against the CSO board, the trustees and the donors. "I just would like them (to) understand and listen more carefully to the needs of musicians that represent one of the greatest orchestras in the world."

"When I hear people saying but they (musicians) work three hours, four hours, not enough. This is very stupid because the work that you see on stage is just a small part. It's more part of the work that they do at home, a lot of work at home," Muti stressed. "And (for) the first rehearsal, that means that they have done a great, great work."

Muti compared the musicians to cultural ambassadors. "When the Chicago Symphony moves around the world, the musicians not only play, they are the ambassadors of the culture of this country... It's a bigger responsibility from the city of Chicago, from the board to take care of this treasure."

"The last thing here in this building, we don't entertain people. We are not entertainers. Music is not the entertainment, (it) is culture, is sacrifice, is evolution of the mind of the heart. And this makes this orchestra," Muti concluded.

CSO musicians' strike started on Sunday night, the first since 2012.

On Friday evening, Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association President Jeff Alexander gave out a detailed outline of the management's contract proposal to the CSO musicians.

On Saturday afternoon, the musicians' union responded. While admitting there are some encouraging aspects to the proposal, the union said the proposal has not addressed their fundamental concerns: wages that are competitive with other major orchestras and keep pace with inflation; and guaranteed retirement benefit.

CSO is considered the finest symphony orchestra in the United States and one of the world's best. It staged 126 concerts in 2018, more than any of the "Big Seven" symphony orchestras in the United States.