Music: A Ford in Their Future

While Kondrashin & Co. were celebrating the joys of collectivist music making last week, the Ford Foundation announced grants totaling $85 million to U.S. orchestras. It is the largest amount ever given at one time by any foundation to any of the arts.

The gift is the result of an eight-year study that explored the pathetic plight of the American musician. The average annual salary for musicians playing with the 25 major orchestras (defined as those with budgets over $250,000) is $5,267; for those with the 33 metropolitan orchestras (budgets over $100,000 but under $250,000), it is $1,174. In the vast majority...

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