Springfield Symphony Orchestra contract negotiations could impact downtown businesses
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – While some cities have landed when their symphony halls are once again filled with music, that is still not so when it is the same in Springfield.
At present, John Anz, director of development and interim executive director of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra, said they are working on putting together a partial season starting by the end of the year.
However, Nadim Kashouh, the owner of Nadim’s Downtown Mediterranean Grill, said he was concerned about the impact it could have on business. He said that on evenings the orchestra played it could bring in “thousands” of dollars for his business.
And with hundreds of people able to sit inside Symphony Hall, he’s worried what that might mean for other businesses as well.
“The symphony is strengthened by a stronger downtown district, we know that businesses are strengthened by a thriving cultural partnership and community,” said Anz. “We have a season in the works… [show dates are] just waiting. We have to come to an agreement. “
Anz said the main thing holding things up isn’t just contract negotiations with Music Director’s maestro Kevin Rhodes, it’s an agreement with the Musicians’ Union for the duration of this partial season.
“We all want to get back on stage,” Anz told 22News. “But the Springfield Symphony Orchestra faces specific challenges and that was before COVID. So we have to make sure we get back on stage both in a practical way but in a financially prudent way. “
Anz said the current offer on the table for Union is this partial season. If the union accepts this deal, it will be able to lock in the dates it has currently written in pencil.