I’ve been a Pittsburgher for all of my 68.5 years and I’ve never attended a Steelers or a Penguins game. The number of Pirates games I’ve been to is fewer than a dozen. But I remember vividly the 1960 World Series, the six Super Bowl wins and the Stanley Cup celebrations. I am proud of these teams because I am proud of my city.
The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has been a significant part of my life since grade school. I’ve been mesmerized by the talents of our world-class musicians and the superb talent and the guest artists they attract. Someone of Emanuel Ax or Itzhak Perlman’s caliber doesn’t appear with just any orchestra. Even if you’ve never been to any of the PSO’s concerts, you can certainly appreciate its being the first American orchestra to play in the Vatican for a pope. You can bask in that glow as I do in that of our sports teams.
The cancellation of the entire month of October’s performances deprives me and hundreds of others of the joy these concerts bring (“PSO Cancels Performances Through Oct. 27: Strike Enters First Full Week,” Oct. 4). The management of the PSO made this unilateral decision while steadfastly refusing to come to the negotiating table. Management will continue to receive salary and benefits for the entire month, which is not true of the symphony members. This behavior is unacceptable and reprehensible. As Pittsburghers, we must put pressure on this board to negotiate in good faith.
The PSO has never had a losing season. We need to be there for the musicians now as they have always been there for us.