Two hours after the orchestra walked out, Chicago’s Lyric Opera has confirmed it is strikebound.
You read the statement here first:
CHICAGO (10/9/2018) – The Chicago Federation of Musicians (CFM) Local #10-208 is on strike at Lyric Opera. This unnecessary and harmful action may require Lyric to cancel performances. Ryan Opera Center, Lyric Unlimited and other related activities also will be affected. Additional updates will be provided as these determinations are made.
We apologize for the inconvenience and losses this disruption creates for our patrons, donors, partners and other dedicated employees, and are doing everything possible to protect as much of our season. That said, Lyric simply cannot agree to the terms CFM demands, given our current financial circumstances. Our proposed changes are necessary to ensure Lyric’s survival as a world-class opera company providing a diverse range of cultural entertainment to communities throughout Chicago.
We offered CFM wage increases in exchange for a reduction in guaranteed work weeks that better aligns with audience demand and increased scheduling flexibility that will allow us to access additional rental income. The leadership of our other two unions – the American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA) and the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) – recognized the need for these essential changes and have agreed to multi-year agreements. Only CFM refused. Lyric urges CFM to continue to talk and perform.
As of now, the situation is deadlocked.