Seattle Symphony grants 12 percent pay rise

Seattle Symphony grants 12 percent pay rise


norman lebrecht

March 26, 2018

The Seattle Symphony & Opera Players’ Organization (SSOPO) has announced a new four-year deal involving a 12 percent salary increase.

From the announcement:

Seattle Symphony musicians are employed for 47 weeks each year by the Seattle Symphony and Seattle Opera. The current base salary is $98,100. The musicians’ base salary will increase by 3.9% in year 1, 2.5% in year 2, 2.4% in year 3, and 2.6% in year 4, reaching a final base salary of $109,745. The agreement also includes provisions to help contain cost increases on the health care plans.

This unique pension plan agreement came about when the parties agreed to explore alternatives to the pension plan design to reduce financial risk for the employer and increase benefits for musicians. 



  • Steve P says:

    These feel-good stories are great for morale.

  • Anonlondon says:

    Just like British salaries….

  • k says:

    And will go into bankruptcy that much faster. These orchestras need pay cuts not pay raises–there is no audience for most of them!

    • Michael Comins says:

      And you know this from your vast knowledge of the symphony field???

    • HRBmus says:

      And exactly how will cutting their pay attract an audience? It amazes me on a site devoted to classical music that there is such a cheer-leading section in favor of its demise. I can’t believe for a minute that people of such outright ill-will can ppossibly get any joy from, or even have any interest in classical music.

      If this’K” believes what he or she says, then they must simply get joy from kicking a man when he’s down – the lowest sort of trolling.

    • Bruce says:

      It almost sounds as if “K” believes that, with increasing financial responsibilities, the management of the symphony will not increase their fundraising efforts.

  • MacroV says:

    The Seattle Symphony has generally been pretty prudently managed, so I assume the organization can handle it. Seattle is quite an expensive city now, so those salaries are still fairly modest.

  • drummerman says:

    3 to 4 % increase per year is about the industry “standard” so four years, 12 per cent, is not really “newsworthy,” except to say that the both sides seems happy and they, apparently, did their business amicably.