Chicago Symphony, Striking Musicians to Restart Negotiations

All performances of the symphony have been postponed since March 13

The union that represents striking Chicago Symphony musicians is returning to the bargaining table with orchestra officials.

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra said in a Wednesday statement that it and the Chicago Federation of Musicians have "mutually agreed" to continue negotiations Friday. A spokesman for the union confirmed the orchestra's statement. About 100 of the orchestra's musicians have been on strike since March 11 . They last met March 16. Both sides then agreed to take a pause in discussions.

The most recent contract between the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the musicians’ union expired March 10. Picketing continues on South Michigan Avenue and additional concerts have been scrapped as union members won’t enter Orchestra Hall.  

The union is at odds with the orchestra over pension and wage issues. Musicians have been picketing in shifts in front of the orchestra's historic downtown Chicago building. They have received support from congressmen, musical theater performers and their own maestro, renowned Italian conductor Riccardo Muti.

Symphony officials have canceled or postponed concerts from March 13 through Tuesday.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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