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Detroit Symphony Orchestra - financial problems

Steve

Clarinet CE/Moderator
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#41
I never thought about it but the latest article mentions how the board of directors is commonly hefty donors, and thus have a goal to keep the symphony going.


http://detnews.com/article/20110208/OPINION03/102080359/DSO-soon-a-Detroit-export

DSO soon a Detroit export?

"Imported from Detroit" is the catchy tag line on Chrysler's resonating Super Bowl ad featuring Eminem. And it's a keeper.

You can apply that message, which implies reinvention and global competiveness, to virtually every aspect of our lives in the Motor City and throughout the state. "Imported from Detroit" defines Chrysler and its home base as unique and world-class.

That's the same message, in different words, that the Detroit Symphony Orchestra has used to market itself here and around the world: It's a "world-class" cultural institution, an orchestra that can hold its own with many of the finest orchestras in the world.

And it's housed in a glorious and historic hall on Woodward Avenue, a place where corporate dollars and patron wealth were willing to pay salaries and maintain facilities commensurate with the claim. But the musicians have been on strike since Oct. 4, when DSO management opted to cut musician pay by about 30 percent, as part of a plan to restructure costs and address a deficit.

A new offer was made last Friday. Now the musicians' strike provides graphic illustration of how the high-class/world-class sheen can burn off a in a hurry. Even the most ritualized and polite societies get raw and ugly when the participants' standard of living is on the line.

Rift remains

The DSO management has been, at times, contemptuous publicly of both the musician leadership and the "Save Our Symphony" group sticking up for them. A Jan. 12 DSO press release sneered at the musicians' "tactics for 2011," accused them of "vitriol" and "antagonizing donors."

The musicians have publicly ranted about DSO executive director Anne Parsons' salary and perks, and demanded parity of sacrifice.

It might be a future textbook chapter for all elitists, as the rarified, tuxedoed world of the DSO sank into the treacherous quicksand of labor disputes As a season ticket-holder, I've held my tickets, unwilling to seek refunds that might hurt the DSO, while sympathetic to dedicated musicians pushed to take deep pay cuts. But when a DSO telephone solicitor called seeking a donation recently, I muttered at her: "Settle before you call again."

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra management is never going to be Enron. You can't truly vilify a nonprofit institution whose board of directors members are largely hefty donors, and whose stake in the DSO's future is purely voluntary.

Time running out

Mistakes were made. Stewards lacked crystal balls and conservative projections. Real estate and interest rates collapsed. And now — as News columnist Daniel Howes reported last week — five big banks, who hold $54 million in bonds, are banging at the closed doors, asking for their money back.

(The banks are the least sympathetic figures here: What might these mostly TARP-beneficiaries do with a repossessed Max? It's not as if you can play hockey in it.) The DSO is part of Detroit's heritage, crucial to its 21st-century bid for credibility as a city that matters.

If the orchestra is going to survive, both parties need to breathe deeply and reach for agreement. They need to act now, before it's too late and "imported from Detroit" becomes the catchy slogan adopted by fine orchestras in other cities.

lberman@detnews.com


From The Detroit News: http://detnews.com/article/20110208/OPINION03/102080359/DSO-soon-a-Detroit-export?#ixzz1DSanBZTQ
 

Steve

Clarinet CE/Moderator
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#42
I've been following this for awhile and find it interesting how most the media and many commentators like to blame the situation on awhat they deem incompetent management rather than with a union so far out of touch with reality. Of course, said commentator's arguments usually go somewhat like, "Detriot deserves\needs a World Class Symphony" and alludes to the Symphony as being part of some important element of urban renewal or the local economy (it isn't), so naturally, Management should pay up regardless of what the numbers are.

The truth of the situation is that fundraising has been tepid even before the economy turned south. Attendence, likewise, has also been down. For Management to magically gain the competence to vastly increase donor contributions when philanthropy in general is way down while bringing more butts to put in the seats during a depressed economy; in a city where most could not care less about what is being played is indeed a fantastic expectation. For all the stupidity for which management is alone being blamed, they alone are the ones who are talking about the realities of numbers.

Supposedly the sides are close to an agreement, but if an agreement isn't reached by the end of the week, the season may be cancelled. If that happens, it's quite possible the Detriot Symphony is brought to chapter 7 by it's creditors mentioned in SteveSklar's post.
It's ironic that in the same town the automaker unions have given up 50% or more of base pay to maintain new contracts to compete after losing (if i recall) as many auto jobs as other states combined, and those same automakers were some of the largest donors to the DSO who thus have stopped donating.

And now the players themselves are telling donors to stop donating ?

I, personally, do not see the logic of this holdout as the mgt are some of the larger donors (supposedly from the last article).

We would hate to see the DSO go but I'm sure another new organization will take their place probably at a much lower pay scale.
 

Steve

Clarinet CE/Moderator
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#43
FYI
from
http://www.dso.org/page.aspx?page_id=107

Board of Directors

Stanley Frankel, Chairman of the Board
Executive Committee

Paul M. Huxley, First Vice Chair
Marlies Castaing, Second Vice Chair
Glenda D. Price, Ph.D., Secretary
Arthur A. Weiss, Treasurer
Lloyd E. Reuss, Officer At-large
Clyde Wu, M.D., Officer At-large
Phillip Wm. Fisher, Officer At-large
Lillian Bauder, Ph.D.
Penny B. Blumenstein
Stephen R. D’Arcy
Herman Frankel
Ralph Gerson
Alfred R. Glancy III, Chairman Emeritus
Kelly Hayes, Volunteer Council President
Ronald M. Horwitz
Dr. Arthur L. Johnson
Richard P. Kughn
Bonnie Larson
Melvin A. Lester, M.D.
Arthur C. Liebler
David Robert Nelson
James B. Nicholson, Chairman Emeritus
Bruce D. Peterson
Bernard I. Robertson
Jack A. Robinson
Alan E. Schwartz
Barbara Van Dusen
Back to Top

Directors

Rosette Ajluni
Robert Allesee
Daniel Angelucci
Floy Barthel
George J. Bedrosian
Mrs. Mandell L. Berman
Stephen A. Bromberg
John A. Boll, Sr.
Richard A. Brodie
Lynne Carter, M.D.
Gary L. Cowger
Peter D. Cummings, Chairman Emeritus
Maureen T. D’Avanzo
Karen Davidson
Peter J. Dolan
Walter E. Douglas
Marianne Endicott
Jennifer Fischer
Sidney Forbes
Laura L. Fournier
Mrs. Harold Frank
Barbara Frankel
Paul Ganson*
Brigitte Harris
Gloria Heppner, Ph.D.
Nicholas Hood III
Mark Jannott
Renee Janovsky
Chacona Johnson
George G. Johnson
Michael J. Keegan
The Hon. Damon J. Keith
Harold Kulish
Linda Dresner Levy
Harry A. Lomason II
Ralph J. Mandarino
Mervyn H. Manning
David N. McCammon
Lois A. Miller
Ed Miller
Jim Mitchell
Sean M. Neall
Jay Noren, M.D., M.P.H.
Robert E. L. Perkins, D.D.S.
William F. Pickard
Marilyn Pincus
Stephen Polk
Marjorie S. Saulson
Lois L. Shaevsky
Mrs. Ray A. Shapero
Wei Shen
Jane F. Sherman
Shirley R. Stancato
Stephen Strome
Michael R. Tyson
Ann Marie Uetz
David Usher
Sharon L. Vasquez
R. Jamison Williams
John E. Young
wow ... look at that list. what i first saw was Karen Davidson, the current owner of the Pistons, ie, another organization going down the tubes.
 

Steve

Clarinet CE/Moderator
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#44
and then this fabulous letter from Peter Cummings of the board which seems to put it all into perspectice, and reality.

http://www.dso.org/upload_files/content_pdfs/2010-2011/DSO_BoardLetters_020411.pdf


February 3, 2011
As a former chairman of the Detroit Symphony, I have chosen to be silent regarding the strike. Largely this is a result of my no longer living in Detroit and thus not being as active as I was for several years. I continue nonetheless to be a board member and major donor, a friend of the institution and an admirer of my colleagues on the board, the management team and the musicians.

I am speaking now because I sense we have arrived at a moment where the institution as we have long known it is near its end. This is not because the musicians play badly. The musicians are excellent. It is not because Leonard Slatkin was a poor choice as Music Director. Leonard is a gifted and inspirational maestro who is a perfect fit for Detroit. It is not because Anne Parsons is a poor manager. I spend a great deal of time with managers of orchestras and major funders throughout the country, and Anne is widely regarded as one of the most talented managers in this industry. It is not because our donors are cheap. As a board member of the League of American Orchestras and also of the New York Philharmonic, I am privy to what the annual campaigns generate in other major American cities. Few campaigns produce as much per capita as does Detroit.

So if the musicians are talented, the maestro a star, the management competent and the donors generous, why have we come to such a pass? The simple answer is that we have been living beyond our means. We were able to do so for a long time prior to the Great Recession, but no longer. We were able to do so because--in the parlance of today--we "kicked the can down the road." We hoped that things would get better and we would be able to afford the last year of a contract, or that the endowment would grow sufficiently to pay off the bonds. But the Great Recession has changed all this. The only institution that can continue to kick the can down the road is the one with the printing press, and even that machine must eventually run out of ink.

Where can the money come from to satisfy the musicians? Government? Senator Levin and former Governor Granholm, well intended like the rest of us, would surely have offered it up were it there. Corporations? The Michigan economy, one of the nation's worst, has our companies fighting for survival and cutting back their charity to do so. The money can come only from the major individual and foundation donors who have sustained the DSO for many years. I know these donors and these institutions well. Over the years I have solicited most of them. I know that they are ready to step forward again, but only in support of a sustainable program. Chairman Stanley Frankel and President Anne Parsons have the complete confidence of those funders.

When they announce to this group that we have a labor agreement we can live with, the funders will rally once more. We have other challenges to deal with, but these can be managed once we are reunited, once we have come together as an institution and have brought music back to the hall.

After sustaining the pain and dislocation of 17 weeks on strike, the last thing we should do is encourage any donor to step forward to support a plan which we know in our heart of hearts will not work. The institution as we have long known it is, indeed, near its end. A stronger, more vibrant, nimble and innovative institution can emerge. I can only hope it will include the musicians that I have known and admired for so many years.

Peter D. Cummings
 

Steve

Clarinet CE/Moderator
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#45
and of course the latest headlines from the Detroit Free Press

DSO musicians reject latest offer; is cancellation of season next?
http://www.freep.com/article/201102...ason-next-?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE

The musicians of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra have rejected management’s latest contract offer, setting up a showdown that could lead to the cancellation of the rest of the 2010-11 season by the end of the week.

With nearly 50% of the season already lost due to the 19-week musicians’ strike, management has said the conflict has reached a critical juncture. Musicians said that management’s latest offer represented progress, but the two sides remained at odds how to spend $2 million earmarked for community outreach work, and how much of that money would be guaranteed — as opposed to optional for extra work.

Earlier this week, the secretary of the DSO’s executive committee, Glenda Price, said that if a deal wasn’t in place by the end of the week the season would “probably” be canceled.

While management has not characterized the current contract proposal as a final offer, it had asked the musicians for a formal response by Friday. Cellist Haden McKay, a member of the musicians’ negotiating team, confirmed today that the players had rejected the offer — but said that the musicians had made an informal counterproposal and were still interested in finding common ground
 
#46
I find Mr. Cummings' words to be very congenial and alltogether apt to the situation.

There just isn't the money and no where from which to get it. From the perspective of management and donors, it's better to let the Symphony fail than to agree to any situation where the only ones comfortable with it are the seemingly aloof musicians. Let it die and don't an agonize as a new one can be built.
 

SOTSDO

Old King Log
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#47
But that that was a solution...

"Let it fail" has been tried at least three time in the case of the San Diego Symphony (or whatever it's called), and it's not a solution, at least for the continued success of a musical organization.

The one party that always gets the shaft in such situations is the bargaining unit employees - they (or their replacements) are hired at greatly reduced salaries. Management seems to seek its own level ("In order to hire a decent business manager, we are going to have to offer competitive compensation"). Funny how that works.

Truth be told, I can't see any state supporting more than four such organizations - just enough to keep a live performance within driving range of most of the population.

Here in Texas, we've got yer Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, San Antonio, Austin and (I think) El Paso symphonic organizations, as well as lesser operations in Midland/Odessa (and perhaps one in each), Amarillo (which, for what it is worth, is pronounced "Am-a-ree-you" - the "ll" is "y" in Spanish), the Valley and Corpus Christi. Of these, only Dallas and Houston are near the top rankings in the United States - the rest may be "professional", but they aren't what you would call "top drawer".

So, maybe one in Dallas and Houston, and one out west somewhere are about the real limits of Texas. Two or three in California, two in Missouri and New York and Florida, one in Indiana, Louisiana and most other states.

Even this model doesn't work. Florida has had trouble holding onto a working symphonic group, as has Louisiana. If one group can't be successful in a state the size of Louisiana, then another approach has to be considered.

How about this:

Four regional orchestras for the United States. Each travels its area, working a full year, bringing music to the masses. Taxpayer funded operations employ full time musicians, not a group that works nine months out of the year. They would rehearsal as they traveled - symphonic organizations travel with almost all of their equipment (the bass clarinet in A gets left behind, though), and parts from the library or guest stars can be flown in for much less than it would take to return to a "home" hall.

It's not perfect, and it would thrust a goodly number of musicians out of the trade (and most likely into something more remunerative in the bargain), but it would allow second, third and fourth tier classical music markets to abandon the façade of maintaining a symphonic music organization on a less than living wage for its employees.

As it stands now, there is just too much classical music ("art music", if you will) capability out there chasing far too little demand. Adam Smith said something about that, but I forget what it was...

Oh, right. Analogies work well with this stuff:

It is as if there are hundreds of universities and colleges across the nation, each turning out a dozen or more perfectly trained buggy whip makers every year, dumping them into a pool already over saturated with buggy whip makers who can't get a paying job.
 
#48
"Let it fail" has been tried at least three time in the case of the San Diego Symphony (or whatever it's called), and it's not a solution, at least for the continued success of a musical organization.
hmm. It occurs to me that if the San Diego Symphony or whatever it's called still exists as a whole or as a predecessor of it's former self, then "Let it fail" hasn't really been tried.
 
#49
"Let it fail" has been tried at least three time in the case of the San Diego Symphony (or whatever it's called), and it's not a solution, at least for the continued success of a musical organization.
hmm. It occurs to me that if the San Diego Symphony or whatever it's called still exists as a whole or as a predecessor of it's former self, then "Let it fail" hasn't really been tried.
 

Steve

Clarinet CE/Moderator
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#50
here's an interesting statement

He said that the musicians wished they could address the donors directly to ask if there was any flexibility in the restrictions or conditions of their gifts.

and

and that its latest proposal would still leave the financially troubled orchestra running deficits for the three-year life of the contract.

and

the orchestra has lost $19 million since 2008 and drained its endowment to make up the difference.
http://www.freep.com/article/201102...n-jeopardy-offer-turned-down?odyssey=nav|head

I don't get it. The musician want to ask the donors to give more free money?

Add to it, the contract still would continue to run a deficit. The DSO is legally obliged to maintain a certain level in their endowment.


At the end of 2008 the endowment was at 56.8 million
at the end of 2010 it was down to about 22 million

The banks that have a controlling interest are:
Bank of America (North Carolina) leads the syndicate of banks
Comerica Bank., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. (New York), PNC Bank (Pittsburgh ) and Charter One Bank (Providence, R.I.).

the endowment, normally uses the interest gained to pay debt and operations while it grows on interest. The economy changed that and they had to raid it to fund operations.

The DSO and banks have been talking since the fall of 2008 because the DSO fell out of compliance with two loan covenants
[1] DSO's unrestricted endowment has to exceed the principal of the $54 million loan
[2] the DSO operating budgets have to break even or nearly break even

thus the banks called on the loan now

more here if you have a subscription
http://www.crainsdetroit.com/articl...antors-want-to-see-string-of-issues-resolved#
 

SOTSDO

Old King Log
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#51
"No way out!"

My point, if you parse it another way. They keep trying to reform an orchestra. (They still had one the last time I read about it in International Musician, although at that point it was in trouble (again)).

What I was trying to convey was that the musicians continue to be the losers in the equation when it is solved. The community gets an orchestra (for a while), the administrators get market rate pay (for a while), but the musicians are always negotiated downward in their compensation (which they too get, only for a while).

Continued attempts to resuscitate a dying life form, especially one that is virtually brain dead at the time that the attempts take place, are noble. They may even succeed in rare cases. However, they are always costly, and someone has to bear that cost.

Thus far, art music has had rich folks in their corner. Aging patrons of the arts (in other fields they are called "disease dragons", from the image of the older, fading women who support charitable causes) have subtly shifted over the last forty years, away from those who (in their youth) were routinely exposed to the same music as a required part of their education, to those who were routinely exposed to everything but such music, in a curriculum freed from the fetters of Nineteenth Century norms. This has been a gradual change, but a change none the less.

And, if you lose your donor base (folks with the kind of money to make a symphony "happen"), then you are either going to have to jack your ticket prices into the stratosphere (where some would already argue that they are, but they aren't there yet), eat away at your endowment (most groups have already done this) or give up the ghost.

When you start putting numbers on paper, the problem becomes very clear:

• Musicians have gradually moved to an aspiration of a middle class lifestyle. Most have moved from music as a trade (often not requiring a four year degree) to music as a profession, with non-degreed folks being the great exception. First rate, top drawer musical folks who work for "major" orchestras seldom earn under $120,000 per annum, this by the audition ads in International Musician. Add benefits (sick leave, vacation, unemployment contributions, medical insurance) to that sum, and you are talking about an annual personnel cost (musicians alone, no equipment or admin or travel) of about $11,180,000.

• Once you consider administrative costs (involving more than one or two expensive administrators, a high priced musical director and his assistants, plus the low cost help), facilities (it costs big money to operate a large concert facility, even just to keep it mothballed), travel (bands may have traveled on busses in the past, but orchestral travel almost always involves the human equivalent of air freight), and soon you are talking (as Vanna White used to chant) "Big Money!"

Put very bluntly, a city that aspires to a "first class symphonic organization" (a term frequently applied to the Houston Symphony when fund raising is an issue) is going to have to find that big money somewhere.

• Ticket holders? Prices are already sky high. Keep raising them, and you will lose the non-subscriber, and (in some cases) the subscriber.

• The municipality in which they are located? There might be some help with the facilities side of the equation, but compensation for arts group is a third rail issue in politics. If it comes down to a cop on the beat/fireman in the house or a violist, the cop (or fireman) is going to come out ahead every time, and rightfully so, as the public safety officer can be seen as serving all, while the poor violist is playing to a limited cohort of the population.

• Fund raisers? This well has been used a lot in the past, but as populations change and those attuned to art music "age" and drop out of the donor pool, it develops less and less. Corporations are going through lean times now as well, and are not as prone to be as generous as in the past.

• The endowment? This option has been used quite heavily for some time now (all of those corporate donations during the good times had built up over the years), but endowments (as a general rule) have been shrinking, and in some cases have been used up altogether.

As Leo Blum said in The Producers, "No way out! No way out!" Art music is in a downward spiral, and unless government can be persuaded to step in and spend space program levels of dollars to help, the spiral will continue. " 'Saving' Detroit will only amount to bailing a bucket or two of water out of the already waterlogged art music boat, and only the government wields the kind of financial power necessary to make the difference.
 

Steve

Clarinet CE/Moderator
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#52
on the DSO facebook page
the DSO added

excerpt
the DSO should have left the endowment alone in 2008 after the market crash. Had we left the endowment alone in response to a devastating economic drop, we would have run out of cash in December 2008, gone out of business and been unable to pay any salaries. You then propose that perhaps contracts could have been renegotiated in response to financial challenges. Management had attempted to renegotiate the musicians’ contract since the spring of 2009 to no avail.
http://www.facebook.com/detroitsymphony/posts/174584789252913
 

SOTSDO

Old King Log
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#54
You bring music schools into it and I am reminded of Ron and Rhonda, a piece I wrote many, many years ago for The Clarinet, but was told that, while it might be apposite and true, it could never be published in a magazine devoted to "art" music.

I'll have to see if I can dredge up a copy to post hereon. (It's probably on a 400K 'floppy' disk - that's how old it is. I did it on an original Macintosh (128K RAM) computer.)
 
#56
You bring music schools into it and I am reminded of Ron and Rhonda, a piece I wrote many, many years ago for The Clarinet, but was told that, while it might be apposite and true, it could never be published in a magazine devoted to "art" music.

I'll have to see if I can dredge up a copy to post hereon. (It's probably on a 400K 'floppy' disk - that's how old it is. I did it on an original Macintosh (128K RAM) computer.)
I still have several operable computers that will read this. In fact I have an old SE that's plugged in and ready to turn on, though it's been over a year.
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#57
I finally put my Mac 512K in the computer recycling at work, about a month ago.
 
#58
My point, if you parse it another way. They keep trying to reform an orchestra. (They still had one the last time I read about it in International Musician, although at that point it was in trouble (again)).

What I was trying to convey was that the musicians continue to be the losers in the equation when it is solved. The community gets an orchestra (for a while), the administrators get market rate pay (for a while), but the musicians are always negotiated downward in their compensation (which they too get, only for a while).
I'm not quite sure why or if you think it ought to be any other way. It is, after all, the musician's art that is continually finding itself less in demand. Administrative skills translate too well to other environments to pay less than market.

Continued attempts to resuscitate a dying life form, especially one that is virtually brain dead at the time that the attempts take place, are noble. They may even succeed in rare cases. However, they are always costly, and someone has to bear that cost.
I don't see things so dismal. It's a declining art form, yes, as it has been for a century now, but it's not yet near disappearing given it's prominent use in soundtracks, scholarly value, and has a still somewhat significant popular appeal.

Thus far, art music has had rich folks in their corner. Aging patrons of the arts (in other fields they are called "disease dragons", from the image of the o lder, fading women who support charitable causes) have subtly shifted over the last forty years, away from those who (in their youth) were routinely exposed to the same music as a required part of their education, to those who were routinely exposed to everything but such music, in a curriculum freed from the fetters of Nineteenth Century norms. This has been a gradual change, but a change none the less.

And, if you lose your donor base (folks with the kind of money to make a symphony "happen"), then you are either going to have to jack your ticket prices into the stratosphere (where some would already argue that they are, but they aren't there yet), eat away at your endowment (most groups have already done this) or give up the ghost.

When you start putting numbers on paper, the problem becomes very clear:

• Musicians have gradually moved to an aspiration of a middle class lifestyle. Most have moved from music as a trade (often not requiring a four year degree) to music as a profession, with non-degreed folks being the great exception. First rate, top drawer musical folks who work for "major" orchestras seldom earn under $120,000 per annum, this by the audition ads in International Musician. Add benefits (sick leave, vacation, unemployment contributions, medical insurance) to that sum, and you are talking about an annual personnel cost (musicians alone, no equipment or admin or travel) of about $11,180,000.

• Once you consider administrative costs (involving more than one or two expensive administrators, a high priced musical director and his assistants, plus the low cost help), facilities (it costs big money to operate a large concert facility, even just to keep it mothballed), travel (bands may have traveled on busses in the past, but orchestral travel almost always involves the human equivalent of air freight), and soon you are talking (as Vanna White used to chant) "Big Money!"

Put very bluntly, a city that aspires to a "first class symphonic organization" (a term frequently applied to the Houston Symphony when fund raising is an issue) is going to have to find that big money somewhere.

• Ticket holders? Prices are already sky high. Keep raising them, and you will lose the non-subscriber, and (in some cases) the subscriber.

• The municipality in which they are located? There might be some help with the facilities side of the equation, but compensation for arts group is a third rail issue in politics. If it comes down to a cop on the beat/fireman in the house or a violist, the cop (or fireman) is going to come out ahead every time, and rightfully so, as the public safety officer can be seen as serving all, while the poor violist is playing to a limited cohort of the population.

• Fund raisers? This well has been used a lot in the past, but as populations change and those attuned to art music "age" and drop out of the donor pool, it develops less and less. Corporations are going through lean times now as well, and are not as prone to be as generous as in the past.

• The endowment? This option has been used quite heavily for some time now (all of those corporate donations during the good times had built up over the years), but endowments (as a general rule) have been shrinking, and in some cases have been used up altogether.

As Leo Blum said in The Producers, "No way out! No way out!" Art music is in a downward spiral, and unless government can be persuaded to step in and spend space program levels of dollars to help, the spiral will continue. " 'Saving' Detroit will only amount to bailing a bucket or two of water out of the already waterlogged art music boat, and only the government wields the kind of financial power necessary to make the difference.
I guess then that the solution is for less to pursue musical professions, and for musicians to accept less lucrative compensation more commensurate with the demand for their skill, or explore other industries.

We are merely in for further regression. The orchestras that survive then will be those who's musician's best accept these truths
 
#59
I finally put my Mac 512K in the computer recycling at work, about a month ago.
yikes! you know that means it'll be worth a ton of money in due time. The fact that these little gems weren't all that reliable, coupled with free community recycling programs will mean these things will be expensive collector items.

Right now, a good condition 512K is worth just a couple hundred bucks, or so, IIRC. Not really worth marketing and messing with shipping for most people.
 

SOTSDO

Old King Log
Staff member
CE/Moderator
#60
Not only do I still have my original Mac in the carrying case in the back closet, I even have an original Macintosh case (the one with all of the signatures inside) that I salvaged when a computer upgrade was being done and they set the keyboard atop the case vents, resulting in a partial meltdown.

Someday, I'm going to get the back of the case cut free and mount it as a wall hanging.

I also have the external and internal drives, so reading it isn't a problem. And I have a USB drive to copy the article from, once I move it from 400 K to 1.2 meg floppy disk.

Apple believes that media delivered on CD or DVD is about to become obsolescent, if not obsolete. My inside sources with the firm tell me that the MacBook Air pattern of no on-board Super Drive (CD/DVD) is the wave of the future.
 
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