Lyric Opera musicians go on strike, threatening opera season

CHICAGO (AP) — Musicians with the Lyric Opera of Chicago have walked off the job.

The musicians set up a picket line outside the Civic Opera House on Tuesday. They cite the company’s proposal to cut the number of orchestra musicians by five.

The opera company also wants to cut the pay of remaining musicians by 8 percent and the number of working weeks by two weeks to 22 weeks.

Opera officials say the company cannot agree to the terms the musicians demand given current financial circumstances. They say changes are necessary to ensure the opera company’s survival as a “world-class” opera company.

Opera officials say the strike may require the cancellation performances.

The musicians strike comes a day after the Lyric Opera reached an agreement with stagehands, hair and makeup workers, and ticket sellers.

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