ESO and Musicians Agree to Two-Year Deal, Helping Ensure Fiscal Sustainability While Strengthening Community Engagement

ELGIN — The Elgin Symphony Orchestra (ESO) and its musicians have agreed to a mutually beneficial two-year contract that lays the foundation for the sustainability and growth of the award-winning symphony orchestra, which is now in his 73rd year. The deal comes as the ESO enters its second season under new management, actively auditioning music director candidates, and plans for greater engagement as audiences once again choose to seek out live entertainment opportunities.

“These are difficult times, so of course the negotiations were not easy. Fortunately, we were able to agree on a two-year contract which will give the new management the opportunity to solidify the finances of the orchestra and at the same time developing new performance opportunities for our musicians,” said Charles Schuchat, Chairman of the ESO Players Committee.

Symphony chief executive Marc Thayer, who took over the helm of ESO a year ago, believes the deal is key to putting ESO on a solid financial footing and will provide more opportunities for the Symphony to reach new and current audiences in unique and more intimate settings in addition to the traditional concerts of the Hemmens Cultural Center.

“‘We are very pleased to have reached a very reasonable agreement with our musicians on the best way to proceed and plan for the next two years and beyond. Thanks to our creative musicians and staff, we will present new initiatives exciting alternative music sites while achieving a balanced budget, making ESO self-sufficient for the foreseeable future,” said Thayer.

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