Musicians Union Boycotting Conductor Hacko
A concert this weekend by the new Sacramento Symphony has been postponed. It had been organized by controversial conductor Zvonimir Hacko . As Jeff Hudson reports, musicians have been told not to play for him.
Thursday, November 18, 2004
Hacko’s newest orchestra, launched in September as the Sacramento Symphony, was to have performed at Westminster Presbyterian Church tomorrow night. However, the church office confirmed Wednesday that the orchestra had cancelled the booking. In addition, after several paychecks to musicians bounced in September, the American Federation of Musicians has instructed its members not to play for Hacko. Larry Gardner is Secretary Treasurer for Musicians Local 12. (Larry) Blakely is the new Sacramento Symphony’s executive director. Gardner took pains to emphasize that the musicians union supports other Sacramento groups that are not associated with Hacko. (Larry) Another door closed to Hacko recently, when the music faculty at Sacramento State University voted to block him from continuing to rent rehearsal rooms in the music building on campus. The Sacramento Symphony League, Sacramento Youth Symphony and Sacramento Philharmonic have also stressed that they are not connected with Hacko. Hacko arrived in Sacramento in 1995, and since that time he has announced formation of three full-sized orchestras, two chamber orchestras, a Mozart festival, a Bach festival, a vocal academy, and several other music organizations. Some of these groups never gave a concert. A few others lasted for a single season. Donald Kendrick, conductor of the Sacramento Choral Society and Orchestra, worries that the sheer number of organizations launched by Hacko is having a negative effect on other, more established arts groups in Sacramento. (Confusion, muddying the waters) Kendrick knows there are many people in Sacramento who want to support the arts. (But….) Cynthia Macdonald is the chair of the Sacramento Symphony’s Board of Governors. She said the organization has been in negotiations with the musicians union for 16 months. (“stumbling blocks”) Macdonald said the organization plans to play its January concert as scheduled. “I am committed to making this work. . . Jeff Hudson, KXJZ news.