Orchestra Digest: Oct. 8th

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This week: TSO innovates, new contracts in Chicago and St. Paul, and a new president for the Vancouver Symphony. Here are stories we're following...

Canadian symphonic news

The Toronto Symphony has created a new position, Vice-President for Innovation, and appointed Adrian FungMusical Toronto reports. A founding member of the award-winning Afiara Quartet, Fung will work with the TSO's outreach and education and in fostering new collaborations.

The Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony and other "pillar cultural groups" in the region may receive increased municipal support over the next few years, as the city council endorsed a consultant's recommendations, the Region Record reports. Possible increases are yet to be set; support will at least maintain at current levels. 

Symphony Nova Scotia benefitted from increased ticket sales, donations, and outreach activities, as well as a funding increase from the municipality of Halifax in 2014-15, the Chronicle Herald reports. The Symphony finished with a small deficit, attributable to weather cancellations and a decrease in Canada Council funding. 
The National Arts Centre's annual gala set a fundraising record at just over $1 million, the Ottawa Citizen reports. This gala was the first for new NACO music director Alexander Shelley, and also featured pianist Lang Lang. 
Kelly Tweeddale will take over as Vancouver Symphony president in November, the Sun reports. Tweeddale has served as Seattle Opera's executive director for 13 years, overseeing successful social media and fundraising initiatives. 
And 20 young Canadian string players faced difficult decisions between priceless instruments,  after winning the 2015 Canada Council Musical Instrument Bank Competition, as the National Post reports
Making news elsewhere
The Chicago Symphony ratified a 3-year contract including wage and pension increases and greater scheduling flexibility, the Chicago Tribune reports. This was the first CSO negotiation led by President Jeff Alexander, formerly of the Vancouver Symphony
The St. Paul Chamber Orchestra signed a two-year contract extension with musicians, the first since the orchestra's 6-month lockout in 2012-13, the Star Tribune reports. The deal includes raises for lower-paid musicians in both years, while principal players will receive raises only in the second year. 
The Pittsburgh Symphony's 2015 summer season was pronounced a success, the Tribune-Review reports, with increased attendance at more concerts, including a new Thursday Night Icons Series and strong pops programming. 
Compiled by Matt Heller, OCSM 1st VP. Sources include the discussion groups of ICSOM and ROPA. Visit OCSM on Facebook, or tweet us @ocsm-omosc.
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