A year ago, with the PSO in financial trouble, the musicians agreed to accept two years of pay cuts, with salaries returning to "normalcy" in 2005-06. Specifically, the contract calls for a salary pegged to 95 percent of the average pay at four orchestras‹the Philadelphia Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, and Cleveland Orchestra.
The new contracts at all four orchestras‹in Philadelphia, musicians have not yet ratified the terms‹include pay raises. Added up, the Post-Gazette says, the numbers suggest that the minimum salary in Pittsburgh will rise from $83,182 this year to $101,084 a year from now.
Orchestra president Lawrence Tamburri said that the PSO would have to examine the exact language of its own contract and of the contracts at the other orchestras before calculating the new salary. "This is a complex issue," he told the paper. "The nature of the agreements is not straightforward." For example, some of the other orchestras have pay increases partway through the 2005-06 season; it's unclear what affect those raises will have in Pittsburgh.