• U.S.

Music: Orchestra for Hire

1 minute read

In the U. S., symphony orchestras hire soloists to appear with them at concerts. In Continental Europe, it is often the other way about. There, a soloist who cannot get a paid engagement with an orchestra some-times pays the orchestra for the privilege of being heard with it. Fees for such appearances differ, depending on the country and the fame of the orchestra. In Paris an appearance, with rehearsals, costs $150 and up. In Germany and Austria rates are higher.

Last week for the first time in the U. S. an orchestra announced that it was for hire. Sponsor of the venture was U. S. Conductor Leon Barzin, who has long mulled over the problem of how U. S. pianists and fiddlers who are not headliners can get a chance to play with an orchestra. Conductor Barzin’s new American Orchestra, a professional, unionized, 72-man group of players, offered its services to soloists at a minimum price of $1,800 per concert. First taker, who appeared last week in a Carnegie Hall concert with the new group, was U. S. Pianist Frank Bishop. Pianist Bishop played three concertos, broke down in two of them, but at least he had had his night out.

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