Music director Gerard Schwarz said in a statement that the SSO was seeking "a new leader [to] help us achieve our potential as one of the great orchestras of the world. It is hard for me to say goodbye to a friend after so many years, and I wish him all the best."
The orchestra has named associate concertmaster Maria Larionoff as acting concertmaster for the 2004-05 season.
Executive director Paul Meecham told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer that the orchestra offered other positions to Talvi, which the violinist declined. In an email to the paper, Talvi said that the musicians union had filed a grievance on his behalf. "Too many musicians have been used as scapegoats," he said.
The SSO also announced that it has hired two violists: Mara Lise Gearman, formerly of the Oregon Symphony, and and Arie Schachter, who has been serving as a substitute for the Cincinnati Symphony.