Musicians have demanded an open audit of the orchestras' finances, complaining about an ongoing $50 million renovation of Orchestra Hall's lobby. Henson said renovation funds come from dedicated donations and are needed to keep drawing audiences and big donors.
Jesse Rosen, president and chief executive officer of the League of American Orchestras, which doesn't take sides in labor-management disputes, said orchestras are struggling with the economy like many other businesses that depend on discretionary spending.
"These are big cultural trends that are affecting the movie business, and professional sports, and the way our culture operates now," he said. "So it's not surprising that we're likely to see a period of visible experimentation in American orchestras and the way they operate."
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