Breaking: Orchestra is locked out in Canada cold

Breaking: Orchestra is locked out in Canada cold


norman lebrecht

December 15, 2015

The 66 musicians of  l’Orchestre symphonique de Québec were locked out of their workplace last night and told they would not receive pay or benefits.

Pay in the Quebec Symphony is appalling. Most players earn C$33-35,000. A dozen principals receive C$42-43,000.

This needs to be settled quickly, before the kids start to starve. Report here in French.

quebec orch


  • Robin Elliott says:

    This is Canada’s oldest orchestra, founded in 1902. The Grinch must be smiling.

  • Eddie Mars says:

    The spirit of Samuel Smiles strikes again.

  • CA says:

    It would be helpful to know how many weeks the musicians are employed full-time. I doubt that the numbers quoted are for 52 weeks of full-time work, or are they? I don’t read French and most on this page probably don’t either.

    • eline brock says:

      The official spokesperson for the musicians of the OSQ is Benoit Cormier.
      The OSQ was contracted for 33 weeks until 2 years ago when the musicians were asked (and accepted) a reduction in the number of weeks to 31 “for a period of 2 years ” in order to address the large debt. Management has now asked them to abandon these two weeks permanently, which was accepted.
      The significant concessions asked for have mostly been accepted in order to keep the orchestra running.
      Please “like” their facebook page at Association des Musiciens et Musiciennes de l’Orchestre Symphonique de Quebec and look for updates.
      Feel free to contact the orchestra at with your comments.

  • Trombonedadio says:

    They work about 35-ish weeks per year for the salary you see posted.

  • Christophe Huss says:

    Locked in again, after 36 hours…