The bitter lockouts of musicians in Minnesota and St Paul are reaping unforseen consequences – a weeping for generations. This has just come in from veteran concertmaster Romuald Tecco:
Mr. Dobson West January 2, 2013
The St. Paul Chamber Orchestra
408 St. Peter Street
St. Paul, MN 55102
Dear Mr. West,
During my 26 year tenure as concertmaster of the SPCO from 1972 to 1998, I have been witness to good managers and Boards, to some excellent ones and then to some not-so-good. Along the way we had some rough times, some good and many very good ones. What is happening now to that splendid, unparalleled group of peerless musicians, due to your and the Board’s leadership, is a disgrace and a shame. A lockout should not be used as blackmail and the changes you are seeking are certainly not a solution for an orchestra as unique as this.
I will make this short and to the point. Because of my fondness for the SPCO and my lifelong interest in contemporary music, I had earmarked in my will that upon my death and that of my partner, the sum of $350,000 (three hundred fifty thousand) go to the orchestra to create a fund to commission a new piece by an emerging young American composer either every other year or when income money from that fund was judged sufficient. Should I and my partner die tomorrow, I certainly would not want that gift to reward the kind of institution you are now leading and are trying your best to bastardize. In that light, it is with deep regret that I am striking that provision out of my will. I might reinstate it if and when I am satisfied with the way this sad situation is resolved either by your administration or a next one.
CC: Governor Mark Dayton
Mayor Chris Coleman
Musicians of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra