The Philadelphia Orchestra fired seven administrators last month to help bring a $4-million-plus deficit under control. But apparently that wasn't enough. According to a Philadelphia Inquirer report last week that an orchestra spokeswoman confirmed, officials are now asking Music Director Christoph Eschenbach to take a 10% cut in his annual compensation -- estimated to be between $1.3 million and $1.8 million -- or to contribute services of an equal value. All guest soloists and conductors are also being asked to take a 10% cut in their fees or contribute equivalent services. Other requests include one to board members to increase their pledges by 10%.
Eschenbach has agreed in principle to the request, but even if all the suggestions are implemented, the orchestra could experience a deficit of about $4 million, or about 10% of this year's budget.
-- Chris Pasles