What your music director is earning

It’s all laid out here, on the Drew McManus blog Adaptrisation.

Do not pass out on seeing the New York Philharmonic salary – it’s still Lorin Maazel, not Alan Gilbert.

Next highest earner is… no surprise, James Levine, at Boston.

And while you’re on the site, take a look at concertmaster earnings, also quite an eye-opener. New York’s Glenn Dicterow leads the field on half a million. Not bad for a 20-hour week.

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  • If Dicterow earns half a million dollars a year, how much do the first and second desk violinists make?

  • No musician in Glenn Dicterow’s position has a 20-hour week. The contractually mandated orchestra services (rehearsals and performances) aren’t all an orchestra musician does: practicing is part of the job, after all. A concertmaster has many other time-consuming additional duties as well.
    Rehearsal starts at ten, performance at eight: most players come an hour early to warm up and check on a few difficult passages with their section colleagues.
    A concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic is at the top of a very competitive and highly qualified profession. Compared with other professions which require similar qualifications the salaries aren’t high. It is also normal in a non-profit organization, that salaries can’t compare with those in the for-profit world.

  • I’m researching what the duties and qualifications of a concert master might have been around 1910. (probably in New York City) I’m writing a novel, and my heroine’s father is a noted violinist. For plot purposes, he needs a steadier occupation in the music world and thought perhaps the position of concert master would be appropriate. Any insights or recommendations as to books or publications on that subject would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

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