After receiving an anonymous donation that allowed musicians to be paid, the Louisville Orchestra has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The ensemble asked for protection from creditors Friday morning, and will submit a reorganization plan is by April 4th.
The orchestra’s administration has been in talks with the musicians over ways to save money. The musicians were reportedly told the ensemble needed to save two million dollars to remain solvent. The musicians say the administration tried to cut costs through staff, season and pay reductions, but the players did not agree to the concessions.
Instead, they offered to help with fundraising. An anonymous donation helped the orchestra meet payroll this week, but administrators have said for several weeks that bankruptcy was an option. Orchestra CEO Robert Birman will speak to WFPL later today. He previously declined to comment on the orchestra’s finances.
The orchestra is trying to cuts costs by about $1 million and move to operate with 55 full-time musicians that could be supplemented with part-time professionals. The musicians have been paid through Dec. 15, and are expected to play all scheduled performances until then, however, it is unclear what will happen after that date.