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September 10, 2014

Atlanta Symphony Again Locks Out Players as Contract Expires

The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra has locked out its musicians for the second time in two years as a weekend deadline to reach a new collective-bargaining agreement came and went without a deal, reports The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Players and management are divided over the level of pay hikes in a prospective contract and the orchestra's push for musicians to shoulder a much higher share of their health-insurance costs.

Both sides said talks, which have gone on for eight months with little progress, would continue as the scheduled September 25 opening of the orchestra's 70th-anniversary season looms. Musicians were locked out during similarly bitter negotiations in September 2012 but agreed later that month to a two-year deal that included pay cuts sought by management.