Yesterday was a sad day for the Minnesota Orchestra. Still unable to truly negotiate a new contract, it was learned that the MOA, the orchestra management, had canceled the upcoming Carnegie Hall appearances for the orchestra that has been locked out and prevented from playing their formal concerts for over a year now.
As a result, long time Music Director, the much beloved Osmo Vänskä, tendered his resignation. Here’s the text of his letter.
1 October 2013
Press statement from Osmo Vänskä
Today I have given notice of my resignation as Music Director and Conductor for the Minnesota Orchestra Association, effective 1 October 2013.
It is a very sad day for me. Over ten years ago I was honoured to be invited to take up this position. I moved from Finland to the Twin Cities. At that time I made clear my belief that the Minnesota Orchestra could become one of the very greatest international ensembles. During the intervening years I have had the privilege of seeing that belief vindicated through the skill, hard work and commitment of this wonderful group of players and with the valued support of the Board of Directors, management and administration team, volunteers, as well as our exceptional community.
I send my deepest thanks to everyone involved for what we have achieved together and I wish the Minnesota Orchestra all the very best for its future.
Much has been written about this orchestra: their trials and tribulations, their year long lockout by management, their unsuccessful attempts at negotiating a new contract (even with former US Senator George Mitchell as mediator), the loss of nearly 1/4 of the musicians thus implying their sound won’t ever be the same again and finally yesterday’s resignation by Maestro Vänskä which essentially guarantees they won’t ever sound the same again.
A very sad day for classical music.
Here is what many orchestra professionals had to say yesterday about this latest turn of events.
Iron Tongue of Midnight: Put Me in Charge
Mask of the Flower Prince: Nothing Stays the Same Forever
The Rest is Noise: Vänskä Resigns
Song of the Lark: Fork in the Road
Sticks and Drones: Well…
This is what we’re losing.
Be sure to remember this because if we’re lucky, the Minnesota Orchestra will be like the phoenix and rise out of the ashes again to show us her beauty.