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SLO Symphony musicians and Board of Directors at odds over Nowak departure

Flickr member Thor Liland Larsen

Musicians with the San Luis Obispo Symphony plan to meet sometime in the coming days to figure out the best path for moving forward. The meeting follows their recent vote of no confidence in response to the current Board of Directors' decision to sever its contract with Conductor Michael Nowak.

Barbara Spencer is a spokesperson for the musicians and said Monday, the manner in which they were alerted to Nowak's departure continues to be a sore spot. The Board sent out a press release before discussing the situation with the orchestra members.

"I think if one were to look at the whole situation, there are two things that are totally painful for all of us," Spencer said. "One is the whole idea of losing Michael, and number two, the whole process that was used."

The Board of Directors published a letter in the San Luis Obispo Tribune on Saturday, saying they had no choice but to let Nowak go, and can not legally elaborate on details. The letter did however state that much of the speculation surrounding the situation is false.

The musicians expressed some hope that a mediator can be brought in to help with the situation, but the Board's letter stated their "decision will not change."