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How much money do a "Big Five" American symphony..

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  • How much money do a "Big Five" American symphony..

    ... orchestra musicians typically make?

    Beside not looking young and looking like a hot stud with a full head of hair, what are some general qualifications to be a Big Five musician?


  • #2
    Stjepjan Hauser and Luka Sulic are exceptions to the statement above.

    Bill

    My home organ: Content M5800 as a midi controller for Hauptwerk

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    • #3
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      John
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      https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

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      • #4
        Originally posted by jonmyrlebailey View Post
        ... orchestra musicians typically make?
        So, what's the purpose for the question? Is it to talk about their looks, or something else?

        Michael
        Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
        • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
        • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
        • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 6 Pianos

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        • #5
          See: https://www.careerexplorer.com/careers/musician/salary/

          Gives you an idea of what they make.

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          • myorgan
            myorgan commented
            Editing a comment
            I wonder what it means when my State's average salary isn't even listed.

            Michael

        • #6
          Originally posted by myorgan View Post
          So, what's the purpose for the question? Is it to talk about their looks, or something else?

          Michael
          The question is about money. It's also about what it takes to be one of those big-wigs. The picture of their homely looks is about sarcasm.

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          • #7
            Originally posted by voet View Post
            Stjepjan Hauser and Luka Sulic are exceptions to the statement above.

            One cello guy looks like he's got a stray horse hair on his bow.

            Comment


            • RogerM
              RogerM commented
              Editing a comment
              What a beautiful haunting piece of music. When I was a kid, so about 60 years ago 😟, I played the violin and stray horse hairs were not uncommon. Of course when you realised they were there you snipped them off.
              Stay Safe 😷

            • myorgan
              myorgan commented
              Editing a comment
              That's 2 stray horse hairs on his bow. It's about talent!

              You also have to be careful how you remove the hairs from that end of the bow. Situations have existed where a string player pulled the stray hairs out of their bow, and the remainder of the hairs sprouted everywhere. Friction is the only thing holding them in.

              Michael

          • #8
            That's really obnoxious.

            Comment


            • RogerM
              RogerM commented
              Editing a comment
              Sorry, what is?

            • tbeck
              tbeck commented
              Editing a comment
              The graphic in the original post.

          • #9
            Originally posted by jonmyrlebailey View Post
            The question is about money. It's also about what it takes to be one of those big-wigs.
            My wife's response (symphony musician) is: If you don't know the answer to your question already, you'll never become a symphony musician for one of the large orchestras.

            In truth, it takes a great amount of talent, and the self-discipline to work on your craft 8-10+ hours every day in rehearsal, not to mention private practice for 4-6 hours per day. In college, I practiced 20 hours per week, in addition to 20-24 credit hours of classes (depending on the semester), and a part-time job. It was not nearly enough practice time for me.

            At the level of a full-time symphony musician, one continually works on the nuance of a single note or phrase, and can usually play a passage repeatedly without error. Unfortunately, the pay is often not commensurate with their skill. In a full-time orchestra (like in NYC–I think you called them the big 5), many of the musicians have to live outside the city and commute to work (trains and/or subways) because they don't make enough to pay for an apartment in the city or to house or insure a car there.

            When we were hosting Broadway musicians in our home a couple of decades ago, the going rate of pay was around $600/service, with 8 services per week. I'm sure it's higher now. When filling in for a show as a substitute, their first performance was often the first rehearsal. Perfect to near-perfect sight-reading skills are essential. Most of the musicians we hosted lived outside the city and commuted.

            Except for performers like Joshua Bell, Yo Yo Ma, and others who make their living performing, most performing musicians have other duties as well, such as college professors, or teaching studios. Itzhak Perlman teaches privately–I'm not sure if it's for necessity, but I know two of his former students–one has perfect pitch and is my wife's stand partner. The other is our Youth Symphony conductor.

            If you have time to ask the question, you're not working hard enough.

            Michael
            Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
            • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
            • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
            • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 6 Pianos

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            • #10
              Actually, modern symphony musicians are incredibly photogenic (good looking). 1973? Why is a photo from 1973 being used to make a point in a post that was composed in 2020? In 1973 a crackerjack airline pilot and a crackerjack air traffic controller both made around $100K/yr. In 2020 a crackerjack airline pilot makes (made) around 100K/yr and a crackerjack air traffic controller makes around $80K/yr and if you think the Condo that they own or car that they drive or the food they have delivered, or ANYTHING that they need in this world still costs what it did in 1973 ... well, you would be wrong.

              I just heard about the steep cuts coming to all the Arts as Covid-19 destroys our civilization. I would expect most Symphonies to shut down for good. Doesn't sound like our o.p. will miss them. But I will.
              Last edited by Leisesturm; 07-05-2020, 07:49 PM. Reason: tenses tension

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              • #11
                Originally posted by Leisesturm View Post
                Actually, modern symphony musicians are incredibly photogenic (good looking). 1973? Why is a photo from 1973 being used to make a point in a post that was composed in 2020? In 1973 a crackerjack airline pilot and a crackerjack air traffic controller both made around $100K/yr. In 2020 a crackerjack airline pilot makes (made) around 100K/yr and a crackerjack air traffic controller makes around $80K/yr and if you think the Condo that they own or car that they drive or the food they have delivered, or ANYTHING that they need in this world still costs what it did in 1973 ... well, you would be wrong.

                I just heard about the steep cuts coming to all the Arts as Covid-19 destroys our civilization. I would expect most Symphonies to shut down for good. Doesn't sound like our o.p. will miss them. But I will.
                In the 1970's young rock stars like Peter Frampton, Steve Tyler and Rod Stewart looked so hot. But there were some ugly rockers then too so I see the point. It sounds like there's no financial incentive anymore to want to become a paid professional full-time musician unless one lands a big contract with a big record label. Big money in music seems to be in the pop/rock arena and not in the classical arena these days. My other reasoning is that the Internet has destroyed the careers of many musicians due to pirating of copyrighted materials. Who goes to record stores anymore? Liberace was hot among the ladies and died rich as a pianist and a showman. No more Liberace, Michael Jackson or Peter Frampton hopefuls, I guess.

                Who are the wealthiest American classical musicians ever? Van Cliburn? I'm sure he landed big record deals. What are the record royalties for orchestra musicians and conductors who record as performers in the NY Philharmonic, for example?

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                • #12
                  Originally posted by jonmyrlebailey View Post
                  Who are the wealthiest American classical musicians ever? Van Cliburn? I'm sure he landed big record deals. What are the record royalties for orchestra musicians and conductors who record as performers in the NY Philharmonic, for example?
                  Talk to ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC for the answer to those questions. Why do I recommend that?

                  Michael
                  Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
                  • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
                  • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
                  • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 6 Pianos

                  Comment

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