Nils Halker, SOSMN Secretary
Mariellen Jacobson, SOSMN Treasurer
Save Our Symphony Minnesota Hosts Rally and Media Event
“A Lockout is No Party: A Rally to Bring Back the Music”
Minneapolis – Orchestra patrons will rally for an end to the Orchestra’s labor lockout this evening from 4:30 to 5:30 PM outside Orchestra Hall. The protest will precede a “Private Patron Party” the Minnesota Orchestral Association is hosting in the same location.
“It astonishes me that they’re throwing a party at a time like this,” said Jon Eisenberg, Save Our Symphony Minnesota (SOSMN) member. “What are they celebrating? They’re literally days from driving away our esteemed conductor Osmo Vänskä, losing the orchestra’s prestigious bookings at Carnegie Hall, and depriving Minnesotans of our world-class orchestra. This is no time to party.”
Demonstrators plan to stage a mock “lock-out” with chains and a giant padlock, and demonstrate how easy a lockout is to end.
“Management has been contorting themselves to make this sound so complicated. It’s not,” said SOSMN Secretary Nils Halker. “Put the musicians back on stage, sit down with the musicians and your mediator, and come to an agreement. Prioritize the music over a fancy new lobby and expensive patron parties, and this will be over tomorrow.”
Eleven months into the lockout, frustration is mounting. SOSMN has built real momentum in only two weeks, generating international press coverage of the MOA Board’s union-busting strategies and earning over 7,000 “likes” on Facebook. Despite the strong demonstration of community support, Board members have yet to listen to community concerns.
“We’ve been trying to get this message across to MOA Board without success,” observed SOSMN Chair MaryAnn Goldstein. “Obviously, we don’t have the Board’s attention. We’re hoping that the patrons who got invited to the “Private Patron Party” are people who can persuade the Board. Maybe they’ll bring our message inside. It’s time for management to negotiate and end the lockout.”
SOSMN is a grassroots group of orchestra patrons and music-lovers devoted to pursuing concrete actions to ensure that Minneapolis maintains a world-class orchestra.