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  • Orchestra Digest: April 12

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    This week: More CBC cuts, the San Diego Opera reconsiders closure, and the Canadian Arts Summit considers how we select leaders. Here are stories we're following....
     
     
    Public policy 
     
    News broke this week that the CBC will cut 657 jobs and eliminate programs due to a projected $130 million budget shortfall, the Globe and Mail reports. The cuts represent about 8 percent of the broadcaster's current workforce.  
     
    New restrictions on ivory importation to the US could severely limit musicians' travel and touring, as NPR News reports. The Cleveland Orchestra has warned the restrictions may interfere with the orchestra's plans to tour Europe this fall, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports.
     
    The Canadian Arts Summit met last month in Banff, and a hot topic was recruiting new arts leaders - and to what extent (if at all) Canadian candidates should get preference to foreigners. A commentary in the Toronto Star considers the controversy.
     
     
    Fundraising
     
    The Milwaukee Symphony's emergency fundraising drive last month was successful, raising over $5 million, the Journal Sentinel reports. Musicians have already agreed to concessions to help balance the MSO budget.
     
    The Oregon Symphony announced record ticket sales of $7.5 million, the Oregonian reports.
     
    Last month, the board of the San Diego Opera voted to cease operations, as the LA Times reported; the San Diego Opera is one of the top 10 opera companies in the US. The closure shocked patrons and prompted widespread criticism of the board - as in this LA Times commentary. The board chose to re-evaluate the closure, voting to delay a final decision until April 29th, the San Diego Union Tribune reports.
     
    Musicians and audience members in San Diego are rallying support for the embattled company, and encourage you to sign their petition and follow their Facebook and Twitter pages.
     
     
    People in the news
     
    The Windsor Symphony announced that Sheila Wisdom will take the helm as executive director later this month, the Windsor Star and Windsorite report. Wisdom has previously served as a Board member and Director of Development with the Symphony
     
    An operatic soprano made international headlines when she debuted in two major roles at the Metropolitan Opera within a single day, the Associated Press / CTV reports. Latvian Kristine Opolais sang Mimi in a matinee of La Boheme, filling in for an ailing Anita Hartig, after singing Madama Butterfly the previous evening.
     
    The web journal Classicalite featured an interview and profile of OSM music director Kent Nagano, discussing surfing, his apprenticeship with Messiaen, and Japanese internments during WWII.
     
    The Ottawa Citizen spoke this week with Peter Oundjian, who is celebrating his 10th season as Toronto Symphony music director. 
     
    And the Victoria Symphony's recent Ligeti festival - featuring the Poème symphonique for 100 metronomes - was previewed in the Victoria Times Colonist, including a photo and interview with Victoria Symphony principal bassist (and past OCSM Delegate) Mary Rannie.
     
     
    Compiled by Matt Heller, Calgary Philharmonic and OCSM Past President. Sources include the discussion groups of ICSOM and ROPA. Visit OCSM online at: http://ocsm-omosc.org/index.php
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