Bargaining Unit Report: FWSO

March 30, 2019

by The FWSO Players’ Committee

Two recent appointments have brought great optimism to the musicians of the Fort Worth Symphony: Dr. Keith Cerny began his tenure as President and CEO in January, and last week came the announcement that Robert Spano will join us as Principal Guest Conductor in the 20/21 season. We’re confident that Keith Cerny will bring the same quality of fresh thinking and innovation that he brought to the Dallas Opera, where he established the Hart Institute for Women Conductors, oversaw the commissioning of several new operas, and led the music director search that culminated in the hiring of Emmanuel Villaume. He remains popular with the musicians of the Dallas Opera Orchestra. Dr. Cerny will lead a music director search in Fort Worth, as well, and we are eager to have the benefit of his experience and his own musical sensibility as we all undertake this process. Miguel Harth-Bedoya is not an easy man to replace: he has brought the orchestra so far forward since he came to us in 2000. He has built the orchestra with discipline and integrity, and it’s critical to find a music director who can take over and make the orchestra better still. Robert Spano is an excellent step in that direction. He has had a remarkable tenure in Atlanta and he inspires a new generation in Aspen each summer.Our first set of concerts with him this month have shown us that he’s a musician of wisdom and experience, and a man who will, in his three years with us, invite us to grow in new ways. While all of this is cause for renewed optimism, we also need to acknowledge the loss that March 2019 has brought us: former FWSO Principal Cellist (and local 72-147 Executive Board member) Wayne Burak passed away on March 5, and on March 17, we lost Principal Violist Laura Bruton to cancer after a valiant battle. These losses serve to remind us that we are family—not just within the orchestra, but to our audiences, as well.