Orchestra Nova San Diego announced Oct. 17 the cancellation of its Nova Classics series
Amadeus in Concert,
due to an impasse in negotiations with the American Federation of Musicians (AFM) union and the resignation of its artistic director and conductor, Jung-Ho Pak, this week.
The opening concerts were scheduled for October 20, 21 and 22 in Qualcomm Hall-Sorrento Valley, the California Center of the Arts Escondido and at Sherwood Auditorium-La Jolla.
After a highly successful 2011-2012 season of sold-out concerts under the leadership of Pak, a visionary whose revolutionary artistic model for classical music has been embraced by a diverse San Diego demographic, the orchestra’s board of directors and administration are evaluating options for the future of the organization.
“Our guests have always been our highest priority,” said CEO Beverly Lambert. “Knowing that the AFM union recently called a strike against the Chicago Symphony just two hours before a concert, leaving ticket holders in a hall with no concert, we realized we were vulnerable to the same action. In an effort to protect our guests and minimize financial risk, we asked the union for a no-strike commitment in exchange for a no-lockout commitment from Nova — for the October concerts only. The union declined that offer and we decided it was in the best interest of our ticket holders and guest artists to cancel the October concerts. The risk of a last-minute strike was of great concern to us.”
Orchestra Nova San Diego’s artistic director and conductor Jung-Ho Pak announced that he is stepping down after six years of musical and strategic leadership, effective immediately. Jung-Ho joined the orchestra in 2006 when it was known as the San Diego Chamber Orchestra. Since that time, he has transformed the orchestra into one of the most innovative and entertaining music experiences in San Diego, demonstrating a fresh and open approach to making classical music entertaining, emotional and relevant to today’s audiences and selling out nearly all of its performances last season.
"Our single purpose was to connect people with great music in an entertaining and surprising way,” said Jung-Ho Pak, artistic director and conductor of Orchestra Nova. “By bringing to life the unexpected relationships between beautiful classical music and things they enjoy in their everyday lives - like movies, technology, and food - we gave people a new way to inspire their senses. I want to thank the musicians for sharing some very special moments with me onstage. I believe that we have set a new standard for how a professional orchestra can connect with its audience. Our exceptional staff and board have worked so hard and with so much enthusiasm, that their sacrifice and dedication will last me a lifetime.”
Under his leadership, the
became a buzzword throughout the county. Nova guests were immersed in theme-based activities, including food and exciting participatory entertainment, from the minute they entered into the lobby. These activities set the stage for the evening's performance inside the hall which included creative programming, beautiful music, multimedia presentations and unique interaction with Pak.