This graph shows us how a section musician in Pacific Symphony’s wages compare to a section musician in our peer orchestras around the country.
The orchestras listed are the same ones listed on the Peer Orchestra Budget Comparison graph. Not only do Pacific Symphony musicians make considerably less money than all of our colleagues in our peer orchestras, but when those orchestra’s section salaries are adjusted to account for the high cost of living in Orange County, the disparity is huge.
It is important to remember two things. First, that six of the orchestras listed here run with budgets that are less than that of Pacific Sympony. Second, that even the small amount of compensation listed here for section musicians of Pacific Symphony is not guaranteed from year to year. Musicians must wait until each June to find out how many concerts will be produced, whether the repertoire being played calls for their instrument, and how many rehearsals will be scheduled during the upcoming season. Services have been cut considerably in the past, most notably when our Thursday night Pops performances were all cancelled. The rest of the orchestras listed here have guaranteed annual salaries that cannot be manipulated by producing less concerts or rehearsing less.